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The red-shelled, black-dotted beauty can be a truly mesmerizing sight. As small as they are, the ladybug emits an imposing presence. There is likely because there is so much interesting information surrounding the bug. The origin of their name alone is quite an interesting tale that leaves many with their mouth gaped. These brightly colored beauties are oftentimes referred to as ladybirds or lady beetles. What’s even more interesting is the fact that they aren’t bugs at all, despite the fact this is in their name. You likely already have an interest building, so let’s get into it because knowing this information will only help towards controlling and eliminating the pest from your property. And they are a pest!
The Virgin Mary
The lady portion of the pest’s name actually refers to the Virgin Mary. It was said that long ago, European farmers during the Middle Ages were struggling so ruthlessly with aphids that they begun praying to Virgin Mary for reprieve. It wasn’t long after this that the ladybug showed up, miracle or coincidence? That is yet to be determined, but one thing is for sure. The presence of the bug did the beetle did the trick, as ladybugs are also predators.
As little as they are, they stand the ability to consume as many as 5,000 insects in a single lifetime. This is when the farmers started referring to this saving pest as Our Blessed Lady. It was later that the nickname was shortened to ladybugs and ladybirds. In Germany, there are many that refer to the insects as Marienkafers, which means Mary Beetles.
Have you ever wondered why these beautiful beetles are colored the why they are? It’s because of the DNA that they pose the beautiful appearance they do, but this beautiful appearance won’t be considered so beautiful when you learn its true meaning. These beetles are specifically colored and dotted to represent a warning to other pests. Ladybugs, when startled, possess the ability to secrete foul-smelling hemolymph from their leg joints.
This substance not only smells, but it stands the potential to stain delicate fabrics and materials. Those dots on their shells represent this ability. They are warning signs to other pests that the beetle stands the ability to secrete this odor.
They Are Different Colored
Going back to their appearance, when most people think of the ladybug, they think of them as red-shelled and black botted bugs. You already learned that they aren’t bugs at all. Would you be surprised to learn that they aren’t all red and black? The majority of them consist of these color combinations, but they stand to be produced in every color of the rainbow. It would not be uncommon to see a black, yellow, dark blue, orange, or even plain ladybug. Yes, these are extremely rare, but they do exist.
Researchers believe the color patterns are connected to the beetle’s living quarters. The generalists live anywhere and have fairly simple patterns, while others that live in specific habitats have more complex color patterns. Either way, it’s truly fascinating stuff when all things are considered.
As interesting as the bug is, and we could go on all day, these are not pests you want to contend with. Especially not when you consider their unique ability to stain and secrete foul-smelling odors. The information above should help, but you will still need the assistance of a professional pest management firm. Give our local office a call and we’ll get someone on the property immediately to perform a 10-point assessment. We’ll evaluate the property and see where the pests are entering the home and what can be done to stop them.