Finding one ladybug may be considered lucky by some, but finding a swarm of them in your home is definitely bad luck. Mass invasions of these bugs often occur in the fall, but the warm days of spring awaken the gatherings of these unwanted guests. Here’s some tips on managing Asian lady beetle infestations.
The Difference Between Good and Bad Ladybugs
There are many species of ladybugs. Most are harmless and actually helpful. These beneficial bugs eat destructive pests such as aphids and mites, helping out farmers and gardeners. But another species, the Asian lady beetle has become a nuisance. They were introduced to our country to help control pests that were destructive to crops. Unfortunately, the population expanded rapidly, and so has this bug’s habit of invading our homes in large numbers.
Signs and Symptoms of an Asian Lady Beetle Infestation
In the fall, swarms of these beetles gather outside homes and buildings looking for somewhere to hibernate for the winter. They easily enter through cracks, crevices, and holes. And they leave behind a trail of pheromones so the rest of their relatives can find the same prime location. Besides being an annoying presence, they secrete a smelly fluid that stains walls and belongings a yellowish color. The scent remains for years.
Unlike the beneficial ladybugs, these bugs are aggressive. They’ll bite if they feel threatened. Some people have allergic reactions to them.
Battling the Bugs: Managing an Infestation
If you find a swarm of these beetles in your home, the best way to handle it is with a vacuum. This avoids the risk of getting bitten, and it avoids the stinky secretions they make when disturbed. After vacuuming them up, immediately remove the bag or canister and deposit them outside. If left in the vacuum, they just crawl back out.
Another method of managing Asian lady beetle infestations is less humane. There are light traps available at home improvement stores. These traps kill the bugs by luring them inside where they drown in a liquid solution.
Preventing an Asian Lady Beetle Infestation
Prevention is the best bet when battling bugs. The first step in managing Asian lady beetle infestations is to seal up any cracks or crevices in foundations and walls to stop the bugs from entering. Also, make sure window and door frames are properly sealed. Repair any damaged window screens.
Lining the perimeter outside your home with diatomaceous earth not only keeps out these beetles, but it prevents other pests from entering as well. Diatomaceous earth is a safe and natural deterrent, but applying an insecticide around your home works too if you aren’t concerned about the chemicals. Apply insecticides in the fall and repeat treatments.
Call Free Spray Lawn Care today at [phone] if you need help managing Asian lady beetle infestations or any pest problems. We’ll get rid of unwanted guests for good.