grant burleigh's picture

Ladybird query

Observed: 2nd September 2011 By: grant burleighgrant burleigh’s reputation in Invertebratesgrant burleigh’s reputation in Invertebratesgrant burleigh’s reputation in Invertebratesgrant burleigh’s reputation in Invertebratesgrant burleigh’s reputation in Invertebrates
0452 1

These are two ladybirds whose appearance differs from standard images in identification books. I am interested in knowing whether what I am looking at is pathological or whether it is within the normal range - from the point of view of interaction with predators etc. I think the individual on the right has probably been “got at”. I am not sure about the one on the left and would be very grateful for comments.

Species interactions

No interactions present.

Species with which Harlequin Ladybird (Harmonia axyridis form succinea) interacts


leenestofvipers's picture

Interesting pics

There is a braconid wasp that lays in ladybirds and I wonder if either of these has been got at, however there would be a cocoon on it somewhere. Or possibly something has had a chomp and didn't like the taste.

grant burleigh's picture

Ladybird cont.

Thanks. I did a post to iSpot last December ("Ladybird Behaviour") of a 7-Spot Ladybird that appeared to have been parasitized by a Braconid. Are there any takers for the idea that Harlequin populations might cycle up and down from year to year depending on how far they deplete their prey?

rimo's picture

These are just Harlequins

These are just Harlequins which have been a bit knocked about, either by failing to emerge properly from the pupa (RH photo looks possible for this), or just by being battered - I saw several similarly-dishevelled individuals on a recently-mown meadow this afternoon.

Harlequin populations will cycle with prey availability, but they're probably less vulnerable to this than most other species because of their wide dietary range. Having said that, the lack of lime and nettle aphids last year seemed to hit Harlequin populations, although the rapid reproduction and high fecundity of the survivors means the shortfall was quickly made up this summer

Record your ladybird sightings!