Friday, August 3, 2012

Find a Lost Ladybug

Where have our native 9-spotted ladybugs gone? They are the state bug of New York, but you probably won't see one in your garden. Instead, what you'll find are multi-colored, many-dotted introduced species. 

Have the introduced species pushed out the natives? Do they grow faster? Eat more food? Cornell scientist John Losey wants to know, so he's raising 9-spotted ladybugs - and lots of aphids - to learn more about how the native 9-spotted ladybug interacts with imported species.

Ladybugs are important. The eat lots of aphids (and there are great shots in the video of ladybug adults and larvae snacking on those sap-sucking pests).  After watching the video, head out and look for some "lost" ladybugs - and make sure to take photos of the bugs you find. Find out more on the lost ladybug project here.
And remember to check out STEM Friday.

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