Wednesday, October 21, 2009

First Stink Bugs, Now Ladybugs

Our building near Park & Seventh was swarmed with ladybugs this week, apparently a widespread seasonal phenomenon as the insects seek places to stay for the winter.
My neighbor was not amused when a couple of hundred ladybugs invaded her sun porch. Although they are widely regarded as beneficial insects outdoors, when they decide to join the household it is time to break out the bug spray.
Online guides say it is best to spray them or vacuum them up for release outside (but won't they just come back?). Stepping on them or otherwise crushing them will release a bad smell.
Here is a link to a good article about ladybug swarming.
Another article says swarming often occurs on a warm day following a spell of cool fall weather.
I have always considered ladybugs as a good luck symbol and at first today thought the sight was a good omen for my upcoming weekend trip to Seattle. My daughter had even loaned me a Juicy Couture ladybug charm last year in acknowledgement of this notion.
As usual, I deemed it too fancy for everyday use. And now I am wondering what kind of luck ladybug swarms convey.
It seems our light-colored building was the ideal attraction for swarming ladybugs. Now some are in my apartment.
When the numbers start mounting into the hundreds or even hundreds of thousands as in some swarm reports, it's not very lucky to see ladybugs.
If you have run out of bug spray, try chanting, "Ladybug, ladybug, fly away home" and let me know if that works.


Anonymous DJ Dowe said...

One of the companies that sells praying mantis egg casings tried to give me a bargain price on ladybugs. I never even considered that they could be pests. Too bad you can't find a way to capture and sell them. 'One man's bread is another man's poison.'

1:03 PM  

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