asian lady beetle ontario

Ladybugs are completely taking over Toronto homes and here's why

With the fall season in full effect, you might've noticed an influx of familiar-looking beetles in your home as the weather has gotten cooler. 

The culprits of these infestations are likely the seven-spotted ladybug's cousin, the Asian lady beetle, which has picked up its "Halloween beetle" nickname due to its annual takeover of homes during October. 

The Coccinellidae family encompasses a wide variety of small beetles called ladybugs, lady beetles, ladybird beetles, and includes Asian lady beetles. 

Although they may resemble your classic black and red ladybugs, these Asian lady beetles are a bit different. They are slightly larger than the native species, and usually range in colour from mustard yellow to dark reddish orange. 

The easiest way to tell Asian lady beetles apart from ladybugs is to look for the white "M" shape on the white area behind their head. This type of beetle was brought to North America in the 1970s to control aphids and other crop-eating insects, and has since become one of the main species in Canada. 

As autumn approaches, these adult beetles leave their summer feeding sites in yards, fields, and forests and look for somewhere warm to ride out winter, which explains why many of them end up inside your home. 

Besides being an incredible nuisance, these beetles emit a foul-smelling odor and can stain surfaces with their yellow secretions from their leg joints when disturbed. 

They also have the tendency to bite hard enough to break human skin, especially if they're in search of moisture or food, which causes minor and short-lived discomfort. 

Preventing these ladybugs from entering your home involves bug-proofing your space with screens. Caulking and weather stripping can also keep them outdoors, with a special emphasis on the sunny, southwest sides of your home, as shady areas are less affected.

Lead photo by

Wikipedia Commons

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