Damage Done By Asian Lady Beetles
Asian lady beetles (Harmonia axyridis), which are a species of the ladybug, were first brought to North American in the early 20th century to control aphids and scale insects. Although these bugs are beneficial for gardens, they can be problematic when they get into homes and buildings. They’re considered as pests because when they’re crushed, they leave ugly yellowish stains on walls as well as a foul odor. They can bite although their bites don’t cause severe injuries or spread disease. However, the dust from their corpses can trigger asthma symptoms and allergic reactions in humans.
Physical Characteristics and Habits
- They have about 18 black spots on their body and come in a wide range of colors, such as yellow, orange, red and even cream.
- Adult beetles are about ¼” (7 mm) long and have an oval or convex shape.
- Their main identifying mark is a large black “M” that’s behind their head.
- These bugs have a pair or wings hidden underneath their shell.
- Even though they can fly, they have poor vision, just as all bugs because of their compound eyes.
- They’re aggressive and may bite when trying to find shelter in cold weather, making them uninvited house guests.
- They reproduce rapidly during warm weather but don’t reproduce when indoors.
- The average lifespan for adults is from 30 to 90 days although some of them have lived as long as three years.
Prevention and Control
The best way to prevent an infestation is using proactive measures to keep them out of your house, such as:
- Sealing cracks and gaps as well as cable and pipe openings where these pests tend to enter structures
- Making repairs or replacing any damaged door or window screens
- Vacuuming the beetles up as soon as you spot them
- Using insect traps—Be sure to use traps having a sticky glue board. Once the glue boards are filled with dead beetles, promptly replace your traps with fresh ones. Choose light-colored traps as Asian lady beetles are drawn to light colors. Place traps on window seals and in dark area of your home.
- Once Asian lady beetles have taken over a home, chemical control isn’t the best way to manage them. Consider that spraying or fogging indoors only kills a few beetles. Most of them still hide inside walls where pesticides can’t affect them.
Considerations and Warnings
- Never swat, smash or sweep ladybugs because this leads to reflex bleeding, which causes staining and an unpleasant odor,
- After vacuuming bugs up, empty the bag.
- As these bugs are usually attracted to lighter colors and light, do not turn on exterior wall or door lights at night.
- If you really want to get rid of them, and your exterior house color is a light color, consider painting it a darker shade.
- Not many animals eat lady Asian beetles, which makes them harder to control.
- These bugs generally begin looking for hibernation places in October. Therefore, you need to have screens and other areas in your house sealed by late September, so the pests won’t invade your home.
Often, it can be hard to control Asian lady beetles, besides other types of insects and pests. That’s when you need the help of a highly trained and experienced pest control service. At Miller Pest and Termite Control, we know how to correctly identify all types of insects and pests, besides use the best treatment plan. Please contact us and learn more about our wide range of pest and termite control services for Omaha residents.