Harlequin Ladybird (Harmonia axyridis)

A Harlequin Ladybug crawls down a tree at our MS

Above is a photo I took of an invader species. The Harlequin Ladybird (they call them Ladybirds here in Europe, in America we call them Ladybugs) has many names because it is found all over the world. It was originally from Asia, but it was used as a biological agent, we means used to kill other pests, specifically aphids. They are now considered a nuisance species because they out-compete native species for food. They also have a tendency to bite people and release a liquid that leaves stains and has a foul odor. They also like to winter inside homes.

It is a beautiful beetle however, but they do not belong in Europe. I wonder how it hurts the local ecosystem.

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