How Long Does a Ladybug Live

Ever asked yourself, "How long does a ladybug live?" Whether they are protecting your garden in winter or camping on your ceiling fan in winter, ladybugs seem to be around all the time. Like all things however, these beneficial insects have a limited lifespan.

How Long Does A Ladybug Live In My Garden?

  • The circle of life. The ladybug life cycle has four stages: egg, larva, pupa and adult. Eggs are typically laid in the spring, and adult ladybugs will go dormant during the winter.
  • Cheaper by the dozen. Ladybug eggs are tiny, spindle shaped objects that are typically laid in clusters. A female ladybug can hold the male's sperm for up to three months before laying her eggs. The eggs take seven to ten days to hatch into larvae.
  • Do the gator! Ladybug larvae have six legs and a long, pointed tail, which gives the larvae the look of an alligator with an extra pair of legs. A ladybug larva will live and continue to grow for about a month before it enters the pupa stage.
  • Hanging around. The ladybug pupae are round and dark colored. They spend most of their two weeks hanging from their tails on a handy leaf or branch. At this point, the ladybug spends most of its time and energy transforming into its adult form.
  • Earning their wings. An adult ladybug grows wings and hard wing covers (called the elytra) that have the distinctive red and black coloring. Adult ladybugs feed on aphids and scale bugs and live from 10 months to a year.
  • Water, water everywhere. Once a ladybug wanders into your home, it will usually expire from dehydration in two to three weeks unless the it finds a water source or the insect finds its way back out into the wild.
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There are over 5,000 different types of ladybugs in the world with almost 500 of them found in North America. Some types of ladybugs are more common than others, however, and some of the most common have been imported from other countries.

Myths about ladybugs can be found through the world. These beneficial garden insects eat harmful pests that can damage plants and produce, giving rise to stories of their mythical powers.

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What eats ladybugs? Whether you call them ladybugs, ladybirds (as in the United Kingdom) or the scientifically correct lady beetle, these insects are famous for eating aphids and other garden pests. 

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Read articles about types of ladybugs, what eats ladybugs and myths about ladybugs.

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