Ladybugs Everywhere in My House

Ladybugs Everywhere in My House thumbnail
Ladybugs can be a nuisance, but aren't generally harmful.

While some might find tiny, spotted ladybugs to be cute -- and even a sign of good luck -- when your home is overrun by hundreds, even thousands, of the insects, it's hard to find them cute or lucky. Ladybugs, also known as the Asian lady beetle, generally aren't harmful, but they can be a nuisance. The good news is that you can limit and prevent a complete ladybug infestation.

  1. Why Ladybugs Infest Homes

    • Many gardeners appreciate ladybugs, as they primarily eat aphids, a pest that's especially harmful to roses. However, when the summer is over, ladybugs look for a warm place to hibernate during the winter. They are especially attracted to light-colored homes with a clear southwestern exposure, which reflects heat. Older homes are attractive to ladybugs as well, as they often offer more cracks and crevices where ladybugs can hide or gain access into the house. Ladybugs do not eat paper, fabric or wood, so they don't generally cause damage to homes.

    Pheromones

    • Once ladybugs take up residence in your home, it's difficult, if not impossible, to completely get rid of them. They release pheromones during hibernation and mating to communicate with other bugs, which can be detected almost a quarter mile away. Not only is the scent powerful, but it can remain for several years both on the outside of your home, on the interior walls and in the walls if the ladybugs hibernated in there. Thus, it's nearly impossible to scrub the ladybug pheromones from your home, and chances are, they will continue to attract new bugs year after year.

    Removal

    • Even though you might not be able to keep ladybugs from getting into your home, you can get them out. Your best course of action is to use a vacuum, either a shop vac or a household vacuum with a fresh bag. Once you collect all of the ladybugs, release them outside. Avoid crushing the ladybugs to get rid of them. Ladybug blood is yellow, with an unpleasant odor. It can stain light-colored surfaces permanently. And while ladybugs are not generally poisonous to humans, there have been cases where swarming ladybugs have bitten or pricked people, and they can cause allergies to some.

    Prevention

    • If you discover a ladybug infestation in your home, repair any cracks around doors and window, siding, pipes and other areas where they can get in. Ladybugs are tiny, though, and can get in through even the smallest opening. Repair holes in screens, add weather stripping to doors and make sure that the openings around air conditioners and vents are blocked to prevent the bugs. If the infestation is particularly bad, contact an exterminator for more help and advice.

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References

  • Photo Credit Thinkstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images

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