I live in southwestern Pennsylvania and we are being inundated with ladybugs. They're all over everything!!! Is anyone else having this problem?
Yes! I am in Lancaster County. They come out every year at this time here, along with the box elder bugs. I just read an article that said ladybug allergies are significant this time of year. Good thing I'm not allergic or I'd be in trouble!!
Hope this helps, it was written by our county extension director.
PESKY LADY BEETLES
The Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle has been the biggest pest to homeowners so far this fall. If you are one of those who have found that they are moving into your yard to overwinter in your house, there are a few things you can do to deal with them.
The multicolored Asian Lady Beetle was introduced into this country by accident on freight from Asia and by the Department of Agriculture to control insects on crops. They are extremely effective as a pest control because they feed on aphids and scale insects. However, when the cold weather hits in October like we had recently, they move to an overwintering site. They seek light colored structures and your house is one of the structures they will spot. They gather on the south side of the building to take advantage of the warmth of the sun. They can gather in numbers that get into the thousands and can be a real pest to homeowners. They get inside the homes and crawl around the ceiling and drop down onto homeowners or into their food. They donÂt carry disease, but they do give off an odor and will release a stinky yellow defensive chemical if they are disturbed.
To keep them from getting into your home, we have been telling homeowners to seal up all the cracks around doors, windows, utility pipes and any other opening in the home. Use a good quality silicone caulk. Keep screens in place and in good repair. Seal up openings in the attic. If they get into your home, use a vacuum to clean them up and empty the bag outside. Do not spray insecticide in the house because you wonÂt prevent others from getting in and you will still have to vacuum the dead ones up.
Outside you can spray the foundation and walls of the house with a spray that contains deltamethrin, cyfluthrin, cypermethrin, bifenthrin, or carbaryl (Sevin). Do a test spray on an area of your siding to be sure it wonÂt stain your siding. These sprays have little residual effect, so your population will probably rebuild after several days and you will need to re-spray them.
The box elder bugs (something like that) still control the south-side of the house. The lady bugs are slowly getting started. Tomorrow the south-side of the house will be covered with, one, the other, or both--probably today too.
I just let them have a good time, vacuum up the intruders when I see them or when they croak, and try to keep them away from duettes and other window treatments--they like to take their little dumps on those.
I used to get box elder bug swarms at my old house. For some reason they loved the south side of the garage. Once a year, the building would be covered. Didn't bother me, they're apparently harmless.
Mike McGrath on his radio show "You Bet Your Garden" on WHYY gave some pointers on preventing problems with Asian Lady Bugs, Box Elder Bugs and Stink Bugs.
There are non-toxic repellents that you spray on your house to keep these fellows away. They are beneficial insects, so keeping them out of the house is preferable to declaring war on them.
Commercially made garlic products are available for this very purpose (one brand name is Garlic Barrier), or you can make your own if youÂre handy. Just blend up enough garlic cloves and water to make a strong solution, strain it, pour into a sprayer, add a few drops of dishwashing soap and a few drops of vegetable oil, shake and spray.
You should also deny them entry. Make sure screens and storm windows fit tightly, and caulk up any cracks or other openings on those walls. (This will also keep your wintertime heat in.)
Here is a link that might be useful: Mike McGrath's
So far, I haven't seen any of these pests this year. Had them bad 3 years ago, but they seem to have dropped off since. Haven't had a problem with box elder bugs for many years.
The only bug i have around here seems to be the Stink Bug. I usually wind up having a few in my bathroom... and always find them when im showering... Eww! LOL
Gaack! I HATE those things! After finding them in my food, they TASTE horrible! Yuck! Plus, you don't see them anywhere during the summer, I have aphids on my roses, but do you see those asian ladybugs? Noooooooooooooooo!