If you remember this nursery rhyme from child hood, then you have likely questioned its Macabre content, but ladybugs are generally seen as positive additions to any ecosystem. Especially in lawns and gardens, ladybugs will eat many destructive pests such as aphids and mites. They are an organic alternative to many pesticides, and they are pretty elements in the garden similar to butterflies and hummingbirds. But ladybugs can be a problem if there are too many, and infestations can leave the inside of the home filled with many of these red beetles.
Just like most things, ladybugs are good in moderation. Here is how to handle your own ladybug population.
Keeping a Healthy Ladybug Population:
1. Buy them:
If you have a problem with aphids, mites, white flies, or scale insects, you may want to increase the ladybug population in your yard by buying them. The downfall to buying ladybugs is that there is no way to keep them in your yard. Once released, they may disperse at any rate. However, if you have a problem, they are likely to stay due to a healthy food source.
2. Lure them:
Since buying them can be a waste of money if they immediately disperse, you may want to build a habitat that naturally attracts ladybugs. Planting flowers that attract ladybugs or leaving pests alone will draw in ladybugs looking for food. You can even plant items that will attract destructive pest to bring in their predator. The more ladybugs, the better...until that isn’t true.
3. Trap them:
Too many ladybugs is possibly more of a problem than too little ladybugs. They can get pretty thick, and they may invade the home. Ladybug traps are available for inside or outside, and they are a better alternative to harsh chemical pesticides. You can them dump them outside…far away if necessary. You can also vacuum them up with a sock over the vacuum tube, so they get trapped in there, and you can carry them outside in the sock. If you have a major infestation, you may have to call pest control.
Being proactive by securing screens and making sure your home is sealed from the risk of outdoor pests will also help.
Ladybugs should be celebrated in most instances, as they are plant-friendly and rid plants of destructive bugs. When they aren’t a benefit or become a pest, remove them humanely and safely, and help keep the world’s ecosystem in balance.
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