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Saturday, 25 July 2009

Its called a Ladybird Plague, I call it a BLESSING!!!

I have noticed of late there seems to be an explosion of the native seven spot ladybugs in my garden (more than I have ever seen in my garden on any given year since I moved here six years ago). The numbers are increasing everyday and with that there has been a considerable drop in the alien species harlequin which dominated the seen as much as two weeks ago, as of yesterday I could not find any harlequins at all, not even their larva??????????

There has also been more sightings of the native 14-spot and 22-spot ladybugs along with their larva.

(L) 14-Spot Larva and (R) 22-Spot Larva

Anyway I came across this story in the London Metro paper yesterday and did an online search and found the story to be picked up by the Telegraph and the Daily Mail newspapers (The ladybird plague pictures are taken from the Daily Mail stories).

Maybe the native species in particular the 7-spot is having a particularly good year although they were slow to get going. Have anyone else noticed an increase in native ladybug species?


  1. I haven't noticed any increase this year, but I well remember so many surviving the winter after the hot summer of 1976, that there was a 'plague' the following spring, when great masses of hibernating ladybirds emerged.

  2. Thanks for visiting my blog Robert. I've been searching the net for more signs of increased native ladybug activity but have found nothing. My daughter was on a mission this afternoon and counted fifty 7-spots in our garden today along with a few others, like I said in my post a lot more than we have ever seen in our garden.

    They are certainly welcome to stay around, my runnerbeans are practically clean of blackfly and the brassicus whitefly infestation is now a distant memory, so the more the merrier I say :)

  3. I've seen lots of native ladybirds this year, more than in previous years. I do remember, like Robert, the ladybird infestation following the hot summer of 1976.

  4. Hi

    There is a plague of ladybirds in Cromer Norfolk. I live on the seafront and the building is covered in them - looking at the pavements they are being crushed underfoot. Glad to hear they don't bite as they keep find ways into my flat - keep putting them in containers and releasing them outside. Never seen such numbers before but told happened about 7 years ago following hot and humid conditions.

  5. Hi Anonymous [sorry you didn't sign your name :)]

    Thanks for popping into my blog and for leaving a comment. I heard similar about Norfolk from one of the forums I'm on.

    I was told that when hot humid conditions are prolonged it causes an increase in aphids (the ladybirds main source of food) which can then lead to a population explosion. Which could explain the pattern you observed.

    And they do bite, I've been bitten before but its nothing to cry about and with so much about you might get a nip but you mostly won't even notice :)

    Thanks again for popping by hope you come again soon.



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