Tuesday, August 13, 2013

14-spot ladybird


Several bloggers, including Caroline Gill at Wild and Wonderful , have remarked on the shortage of ladybirds earlier in the year. We had a few 7-spots in our garden in late spring but, as yet, no second generation individuals of that species.



Yesterday this 14-spot ladybird put in an appearance. This is one of the smaller species, less than 4mm. long, with very variable colour patters. The typical form has 14 distinct spots but this form, where some of the spots merge to form an anchor shape on the elytra, is quite common too.



This species feeds on aphids and this individual had a tiny victim in its jaws.

8 comments:

  1. There's something of an Inca or Aztec smiley face delicately marked out on these little beauties. Always makes me chuckle.

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  2. I can't remember seen one ladybird this year whereas there were hundreds about last Summer.

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  3. Thank you, Phil, for the mention. I have yet to see a 14-spot this year. I hope you may log it with Helen Roy and the UK Ladybird Survey. I saw three ladybirds at the weekend (still to post photos) ... but, alas all Harlequin. Interestingly, my blogging friend in the Philippines has mentioned to me that she has missed seeing Ladybirds this year, too.

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  4. Three seven spots on my patch at Prestwick Carr over the last week but I dream if a fourteen spot.

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  5. I see what you mean Graeme - maybe it's a message from the gods....

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  6. Hi John, found a two-spot in the garden yesterday but that's all - I'm hoping they're just late this year....

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  7. Hi Caroline, will do. I haven't seen a harlequin around here for a couple of years now, thankfully.

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  8. Hi Peter, there were a few around here in spring, but hardly any since then.

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