Ladybugs are those cute little insects many of us played with as children (back in the late 1970’s to early 1980’s). But they are growing in population. Why? They have no known predators.
The lady bug many of us are familiar with is the Asian lady beetle. She is multicolored ranging from black with 2 red dots to orange to red with 19 dots and many combinations in between.
If you were a child before the 1970’s and don’t remember playing with them, don’t fear. You didn’t forget them. They were not around during your childhood. Researchers here in the United States actually brought the ladybugs to life, literally. They were created to wipe out another insect the pear psyall and other soft bodied insects that were hurting our farmer’s fields. The lady bugs were then released in Washington, Oregon, Georgia and Virginia. This all took place back in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s.
What the researchers did not realize was how tough the lady bugs were going to become. Every year, they multiply more and more. Now in many areas, they are a problem.
Lady bugs can now be found from Wisconsin to Missouri to Georgia and New England.
They aren’t as cute as they once were. In the fall, these lady bugs begin to hibernate inside the walls of homes. They are small and can hide inside the smallest of crevices. Then as the weather begins to warm in the spring, they begin to slowly reappear, crawling out of their hiding places.
Many people have noticed an increase this past winter of indoor allergy symptoms. The common two complaints: sneezing and a watery nose. Allergists are now blaming this on these tiny lady bugs that have been hiding in those crevices of your house.
What can you do if you suspect you may be allergic to ladybugs? Now that the outside temperature is slowly rising, are you finding ladybugs inside or outside your home? You can use this an indicator that they have been in hiding this pass winter. What is the number? If the number is severe, you can try spraying outside, even calling in a professional. You should avoid being around when the spraying is being done. Then you should have someone else remove the dead lady bugs, because they do leave a scent. If you have to remove them yourself, wear a mask.
When you see the ladybugs inside your house, vacuuming them up as soon as you see them is your best choice of action. Spraying can help, but isn’t really necessary. Remember to clean your vacuum bag often because of their scent.
Do ladybugs bite? Some people say they don’t. But they do. I have been bitten by them. It is not a severe bit, more like a little pinch.
Can an allergy to ladybugs be severe? Yes, especially if you have asthma. If you suspect you are allergic to them and they are in abundance where you live (especially if you live near farms) please discuss this matter with your doctor and allergist. You may even have to take a lady bug into the allergist office with you. Most allergists do have the means to do a scratch test without a sample lady bug. You may discuss this with your allergist.
An abundance of ladybugs can also leave a film on your windows. Once they clear, you should have your windows wash.
Fall is especially the worse season for lady bugs. Before the fall season comes again, have all the hole and seals of your home closed. This also means all the seals around your doors, windows and foundations. This is how the lady bugs gets inside your home in the first place. You can seal them with normal caulking
As for the people who believe they are good luck, guess they haven’t seen a house where the doors or windows have been covered with them, yet.