At Home in Nature

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Ladybugs!

Coccinellidae is a family of beetles, known variously as ladybirds (UK, Ireland, Australia, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, South Africa, New Zealand, India, Malta, some parts of Canada and the US), or ladybugs (North America). Scientists increasingly prefer the names ladybird beetles or lady beetles as these insects are not true bugs. Lesser-used names include ladyclock, lady cow, and lady fly.

Not all ladybugs are red (other common colors are orange or yellow), and not all of them have spots; those that have spots may have one, several, or many.  The number and shape of spots indicates which species of ladybug it is.  There are over 450 species of ladybugs in the U.S. alone.

There are lots of myths around the world about ladybugs and their spots. Some have said that it indicates how old they are (a new spot for every year of age).  If a ladybug lands on you in Brussels, the spots on that ladybug tells you how many children you will have. Many farmers around the world have believed that the spots on a ladybug tells the fortune of the next harvest, if there are less than seven spots, the harvest will be good. Some people believe that if a ladybug lands on you, you can count the spots and you will soon receive dollars in the same amount as the spots.

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Comments:

What does ladybug infestation or swarming indicate? A few short years ago, the south side of my house in Vermont was covered with them.

Posted by Ellen Lindblad on July 02, 2011 at 03:40 PM MDT #

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