The Q&A Archives: Ladybugs In The House

Question: Help! We have been overrun by ladybugs in our house especially in the fall and spring. I know they are beneficial in the garden and that they enter the house because they are looking for a place to nest. But I have thousands of them on the south and west sides of my house and also inside in sunny areas. They are on the floor, the ceiling, the wall, and the windows. Is there anything that will deter them from coming in? I live in an old in a rural area.

Answer: Ladybugs can be a real nuisance indoors! Your home has probably been adopted by the Asian Ladybugs rather than the native kinds. These imported ladybugs differ from the natives in that they prefer to hibernate on high cliffs instead of old tree stumps. Your house might be the highest place they could find in the area and they decided to hibernate under the eaves near the roof. As the weather gets progressively cooler, the ladybugs are drawn toward the heat escaping from your home. They manage to find tiny openings between the boards of the house and end up in wall spaces or attics. The warmth of your home tricks them into thinking it's springtime. Ladybugs are programmed to disperse when they wake up from their winter hibernation, and so they begin flying and crawling all around, in an effort to escape. The kindest thing you can do is collect them and send them outdoors. Either vacuum them up and empty the bag outside, or sweep them into a pile and toss them outside. There may be a few casualties, but the majority of them should survive the ordeal. There's really no way to keep them from coming in, short of sealing all of the tiny openings between the exterior and interior of your home. You're not alone, though. Many, many homeowners are invaded by swarms of ladybugs, especially in the early springtime.

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