With fall's cold weather everyone is spending more time indoors. This includes insects, particularly the Asian ladybug.
Originally released in this country to help control pests such as aphids and scale, Asian ladybugs have a habit of congregating on the sides of buildings and homes in fall and making their way indoors through cracks along windows, doors, and siding. Although beneficial insects, their presence indoors can be a nuisance. They can stain furniture and clothing when disturbed, and some people have allergic reactions to their infrequent bites.
To prevent their intrusion, caulk and seal windows, doors, and cracks in your house. Indoors you can vacuum the beetles or make a simple trap for them and relocate them outdoors.
To make a trap, insert a knee-high nylon stocking into the extension hose or wand of your vacuum cleaner and secure it in place with a rubber band. Remove the stocking once the vacuum is off, bundle up the stocking, and release them far away from your home.
Another trap that you can make at home for less than $10 is a modified light trap. It uses a 60W bulb, transparencies, and a plastic milk carton.
For a detailed description of this trap, as well as other controls for the Asian ladybug, go to the Ohio State University's Web site http://ohioline.osu.edu/hse-fact/1030.html.
Article published on June 23, 2008.