Friends of the ecosystem
These insects are famous for their bright colors and spots. We find them in our gardens and sometimes in our houses… it is the ladybug, also known as the ladybug. There are about 5,000 registered species of ladybugs.
The ladybug has a round red, yellow or orange body, depending on the species it may have black spots. These insects belong to the beetle family and live in almost all parts of the world. Its bright colors serve as an alert for its natural predators, when a ladybug or ladybird feels threatened, it exudes a liquid with a very bad smell and taste that predators such as birds or spiders will remember along with its bright colors. They just have to taste a ladybug to never go near it again!
- Ladybugs are very loved by farmers, since they feed on aphids. Aphids are pests capable of destroying crops by extracting sap from plant stems. An adult ladybug can eat up to 70 aphids a day.
- The females lay eggs on leaves near colonies of aphids, from these eggs emerge larvae that feed on the aphids. The larvae have elongated bodies that are black with spots or of different colors depending on the species. The larva changes its exoskeleton (external skeleton that covers the insect) at least four times before pupating. After a week, the adult ladybug emerges from the pupa. It can take several hours and up to 2 days for the body and wings of the ladybug to become stronger and their characteristic colors and spots appear.
- Ladybugs have different habitats such as forests, fields, rivers and even in cities.
- In times of cold or winter, ladybugs go into hibernation, taking refuge in groups on the bark of trees, among the bushes or in our houses.
- Thanks to the initiative of some young Chilean students, NASA sent some ladybugs and aphids into space to determine if the former could eat the latter in the absence of gravity. The ladybugs turned out to be excellent astronauts: they ate the aphids without much difficulty!