We all know that stink bugs and boxelder bugs are common fall pests, but what about Asian lady beetles? Often confused for ladybugs, the Asian lady beetle was introduced into the United States more than 40 years ago to help control crop pests. They are now a widespread insect and are most commonly seen here in Knoxville during the fall. They will congregate in large numbers on the sunny sides of structures during October and November. From there, they often make their way inside. Their attraction to light keeps them near windows and although they aren’t the most dangerous pest, they are nonetheless a nuisance. The team at Russell’s Pest Control knows how distressing any pest problem can be on your property, and we’re here with all you need to know about the Asian lady beetle.
Asian Lady Beetles vs. Ladybugs
The Asian lady beetle is easily confused for the ladybug, and it’s easy to see why! Both have similar body shapes and coloring. However, there are a few characteristics that set them apart:
- Asian lady beetles are slightly larger than ladybugs.
- They are multicolored and can be anything from mustard yellow to a dark red color.
- Asian lady beetles have two white oval markings on the spot behind their head.
- Some have an M-shaped mark on the pronotum.
- Beetles will emit an odorous fluid and stain when crushed.
Preventing Asian Lady Beetles in the Fall
Keeping these fall invaders out of your home requires many of the same efforts you would take to prevent stink bugs or boxelder bugs. Simply put, sealing off any openings can help keep the Asian lady beetles outside. Here’s what to do:
- Seal cracks around windows, doors, utility pipes, siding, behind chimneys, and around any other openings.
- Repair or replace damaged screens on doors and windows.
- Replace the weather stripping around windows and doors.
- Consider planting mums in your garden or around your home. These beetles are not fans of the plants and will avoid them at all costs.
- Try out an all-natural deterrent using citrus or citronella scents. Make a spray with orange or lemon essential oil diluted with water, and spray around your windows or doors.
Asian Lady Beetles Inside Your Home
If you start to notice these insects inside your property, there’s no need to panic. The good news is that they rarely bite—if they do, the bites are not known to cause any harm. Nonetheless, you likely don’t want them flying around your home. Vacuum them up with your vacuum cleaner and dispose of it in a sealed bag. They may leave stains and emit an odor when crushed, so take care in handling them. As always, the residential exterminators at Russell’s are happy to help with any pest problem you have this fall and all year long. Call us today to learn more!