We knew about the ladybugs before we moved into this house just over 2 years ago. While some work was being done, Ray would see them (alive or not) in the attic or the upstairs bathroom, and chalked it up to the doors being open so much. After we moved in we still saw them frequently, but, hey. They were ladybugs, not cockroaches. No big deal. We saw a lot of them last summer when our linden tree was infested with aphids. Ladybugs love to dine on aphids and other plant-eating insects. Great for your garden. We had a regular feast going on out back for the ladies (though not much in the way of a garden). In the still-warm days of October, these spotted insects would swarm around the house, like something out of a horror movie. I don’t really know why. It was a little creepy and I refused to let the kids outside to play on those days. In all, of all creatures to visit your house, a cuddly ladybug isn’t so bad.
Of course, you’d rather not keep them.
Ray has an endearing habit of releasing certain bugs back into the wild when he finds them in the house (moths and ladybugs, yes; bees and flies, no). He does this gently, faithfully. I am of the cynical opinion that he’s simply releasing them to become a meal for a bird, spider or bat, and they’d be better off in my bathroom. But he is an eternal optimist. The average ladybug only lives about six weeks, not so long. It’s enough for Ray though, who always wants everyone to have a fighting chance.
Now that it’s winter, I am very sad for the ladybugs I find in the house. I don’t think we have much for them to feed on inside, but whenever I spy a little lady on my bathroom curtain or bedroom wall, I leave her alone. It’s too cold to cast her outside, though I know my house condemns her to an end a lot sooner than a few weeks. Alas, if one of the kids sees her, the poor creature is likely to be pinched to death by an over-eager preschooler. But I like to think many of them live to see another day.
Spring is just around the corner, and this year I may just have a garden for my little ladybugs. If they survive, they surely deserve it. Maybe I am a romantic, after all.
Remember that Sesame Street song “Ladybug Picnic”? Check it out on YouTube (where else?)