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Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle

Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle

Multi-colored Asian Lady Beetle

One of the consequences of this past summer having been a soybean “aphid year” is the development of large populations of the multicolored Asian lady beetle in soybean fields where aphids were numerous.  When walking through such fields, it is easy to see many lady beetle larvae and adults on top of the plants.  From the soybean’s perspective, this is a good thing because the lady beetles will help to reduce aphid populations that go to buckthorn where they lay their eggs.  This should help to make next year, 2014, a “low aphid year”.  However, we would remind everyone that these lady beetles, as the soybeans mature, will begin going to other crops including fruits and grapes causing concern, especially for wine producers.  At a later date, they will begin showing up in people’s homes and apartments in large number to try to overwinter inside buildings.  These issues have occurred in late summer and the fall every two years following economic populations of soybean aphids, which was characteristic of this past summer.

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