Posts Tagged 'ladybugs'

Milkweed Madness

A field of Common Milkweed, Asclepias syriaca, home to just above everybody.Silver-spotted Skipper (Epargyreus clarus).Fourteen-spotted Ladybeetle larva, Propylea quatuordecimpunctata.Large Milkweed Bug, Oncopeltus fasciatus.Above and below are two variations on larval stage Harmonia axyridis, the Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle.Don’t forget all the flies and bees. Also, Yellow-collared Scape Moths.Anthrenus genus carpet beetle, I think. Tiny.And Oleander aphids (Aphis nerii).

More Adalia bipunctata

 

This spring, I’ve spotted Two-spotted Ladybugs all over the place in Brooklyn. Down the street. In nearby Green-Wood Cemetery. In Greenpoint. And most recently inside my apartment!

The beetle was on the inside of a window. I captured it by maneuvering a stiff postcard under it — that is, getting it to walk onto the postcard instead of the window — and capping it with my loupe. However, being shy and retiring, it refused to be photographed, so I released it out an open window.

Just a few years ago, Two-spotteds were pretty rare in New York state, after having once been common here. What’s going on? Any chance they’re being released?
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Raptor Wednesday fans: I’m barely seeing any raptors right now. Breeding season and all. Last sighting was a Kestrel on Monday. 6:15 a.m., heard first out the window, seen jetting and stooping over Sunset Park. This was a full ten days since the last, a Peregrine on 6/9. Still doing better than one a day, though: 295 raptor sightings this year.

Ladybugs

The first four photographs were all from on the same patch of milkweed (Ascelpias syriaca), not yet in bloom but already festooned with aphids.Multicolored Asian, Harmonia axyridis. There were several.
Checkerspot, Propylea quatuordecimpunctata. The only one noticed.
Two-spotted, Adalia bipunctata. Counted four. Getting busy and laying eggs. This is one of two egg clusters on the underside of different leaves of the same plant.I also found some Two-Spotted in Greenpoint. There were more Multicolored Asian LBs as well there. Then I hit the MALB jackpot at Bush Terminal Park, where there were quite a few on an expanding patch of mugwort (there’s an epic battled between mugwort and cottonwood there). There was at least one Seven-spotted (Coccinella septempunctata) at BTP as well.

Bipunctata in Sunset Park

Two-spotted Ladybug (Adalia bipunctata). Back in 2012, I reported to the Lost Ladybug Project that I found some of these critters in catalpa trees in Brooklyn Bridge Park. From the LLP, I learned that mine was the third New York State record for this species, and the only one in NYC. There was much rejoicing.Yesterday, I found them down the street, in some street tree swamp white oaks (Q. bicolor) on 5th Avenue here in Sunset Park. These trees are still young enough that I can reach into their leaves and branches. The invasive Harmonia axyridis like these same trees.

There is some color variation in the Adalias, as you can see (and the black ones have four spots…). Like many a living insect, these lady beetles are hard to photograph. They also seem to have a loose grip on the leaves; they’ll often fall off if I touch the leaf intending to turn it toward the camera, but luckily they can fly. Not so the larval stage of the species; these gator-like forms have a good grip and steady jaws.

Persistence

Harmonia axyridisHarmonia axyridis on 5th Avenue. At this rate, why even bother taking shelter for the winter?Harmonia axyridisOn the contrary, let’s stay out all day and night…

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In case you missed it in the hullabaloo over Hamilton, on Friday, the President Elect of the United States of American settled the fraud suit against him for his “university” scam. That will cost him $25 million, but I’m sure that means we’ll end up paying it, and so much more, because no greater con man has ever held such power in this land.

Ladybugs!

Hippodamia convergensConvergent Ladybugs (Hippodamia convergens) uh, um, converging. This year’s aphid boom needs more lady beetles!Propylea quatuordecimpunctataFourteen-Spotted Ladybug (Propylea quatuordecimpunctata).Harmonia axyridisThis looks like a variation of the Multicolored Asian Ladybug larva (Harmonia axyridis). These last two were spotted in Flatbush Gardener’s patch during the C-9 release.

C-9s Return to Brooklyn

Coccinella novemnotataThe New York State insect is the Nine-spotted Ladybug, also known as C-9 (Coccinella novemnotata). This was once one of the most common species of ladybug found on agricultural fields across North America. No more. I’ve still never seen an adult. In fact, nobody could find any in New York for more than two decades until just a few years ago. They were probably out-competed by all the introduced species of ladybugs from Eurasia or our West Coast; a reduction of habitat and, I would hazard to guess, the killing pesticides and other chemicals we spew all over everything.Coccinella novemnotataBut Cornell’s Lost Ladybug Project, which has been using citizen scientist data to track ladybug populations, now sells C-9 larvae. Last week we joined Flatbush Gardener for a release of the larvae in his amazing Brooklyn garden. Coccinella novemnotataThere were Multicolored Asian Ladybugs (Harmonia axyridis) in FG’s garden, so it will be interesting to see if he gets any C-9 adults who reproduce. The ones pictured above and below look like they just need to scarf up a few more aphids before they’re ready to pupate.Coccinella novemnotataAll my ladybug posts can be found here.


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