Ladybugs or Asian Beetle Infestation?
You might think it's Ladybugs congregating at your home or office, but it's more likely an Asian Beetle infestation. Both species belong to the Coccinellidae insect family, which includes over 5,000 similar but different brightly colored, spotted beetles.
Long ago, the U.S. Department of Agriculture imported Asian Lady Beetles (from Asia) to help control damaging crop pests. They stopped releasing them in the 1990s, but these aggressive beetles had already overtaken our beneficial native Ladybug population.
Learn how to tell the difference, and how to get rid of unwelcome Asian Beetles. Take a look at our blog for more tips!
The Asian Beetle
What do they look like?
The most distinctive feature is a black, M-shaped marking on the back of its head. Coloring and spotting depend on what stage they are in throughout a three-year life cycle. Colors range from red, orange, and yellow to golden and cream.
What does the Asian Beetle eat?
Asian Beetles feed on aphids, mites, and other plant-eating insects, including ladybugs. These beetles do not eat inorganic material or foodstuff and will not damage your property.
Do they bite or sting?
Asian Beetles are aggressive and may bite both humans and pets when disturbed. As a defense mechanism, they also leave a foul-smelling liquid (called reflex bleeding) and yellow staining on walls and furniture where they've gathered.
Asian Beetle Infestation
Asian Lady Beetles are considered a nuisance pest, like the drywood and subterranean termite, and have no known natural predators. They gather in large numbers and infest the inside of homes, offices, and other structures.
In Austin, they are particularly active September through November, seeking warmth and shelter to survive the colder winter months. They are attracted to reflective items illuminated by sunlight like windows, doors, and siding.
Unlike Asian beetles, native Ladybugs are beneficial insects. They do not harm us or our property.
Most Ladybugs die off during the winter or hibernate in groups outdoors. It's rare to find an infestation of native Ladybugs indoors.
A single Ladybug can eat 5,000 aphids in its lifetime, helping to protect your garden and our food crops.
Ants and carpenter ants are a dangerous predator of a solitary ladybug. They'll attack because they feed on the aphid honeydew that ladybugs destroy.
In many cultures, killing a ladybug is bad luck. To many, Ladybugs symbolize prosperity and new beginnings.
How to Get Rid of Asian Beetles
Asian Lady Beetles come inside your home through cracks, gaps, and openings around doors, windows, utility connections, and clapboard.
A key to keeping the insects out of your home includes ensuring windows have screens (with no holes) and that access points from the exterior are caulked and sealed.
If your property is prone to invasion by Asian Lady Beetles, keep doors and windows closed as the temperature cools down.
Try these home remedies to get rid of an Asian Beetle infestation:
- Exterior Treatment
Apply a residual Pyrethroid insecticide around exterior areas that are not easily sealed.
- Interior Treatment
Treat surfaces with pesticides that will kill the Asian Beetle on contact.
- Vacuum Disposal
Use a removable vacuum bag, vacuum the beetles up, and dispose of them outdoors. You can also attempt to sweep them into a trash bag.
- Discourage a New Infestation
Clean areas where they've left an odor behind as it attracts other Asian Beetles. Use products such as Citronella or scented oils to further mask the smell after cleaning.
YardDoc provides licensed organic pest control to help you prevent and eliminate unwanted pests, rodents, and critters including mosquitoes, millipedes, termites, grubs, scorpions, bed bugs, spiders, ants, ticks, wasps, and cockroaches.
Are Asian Beetles invading your home or office? Get in touch with YardDoc to get a free quote for a fast, effective solution. Take a look at our happy customer reviews, then take a look at our other services.
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