Posts tagged ‘Aphids’

What are ladybirds?

Beetle

Ladybirds are really small, spotted beetles with a rounded body shaped like half a pea.

The polka-dotted ladybird, or ladybug, is really  small beetle with a round body shaped like half a pea.  The most familiar ladybirds are shiny red with black spots.  But some are black with red spots.  Still others are yellow with black of red spots.

These gaily colored insects live in a orchards, gardens, and fields, where they eat great number of aphids and other plant-harming bugs.

In order times, farmers burning off their fields fretted about harming the helpful ladybird, giving rise to the children’s verse:  “ladybird, ladybird, fly away home.  Your house is on fire and your children are gone.”

To “fly away home,” a ladybird first raises its hard wing covers and then unfolds it flying wings.

The lady bird beetle got its name during the Middle Ages, when the insect was associated with the Virgin Mary by such names as creatures of Our Lady and Animals of the Virgin. – Dick Rogers

What are aphids?

Aphids

Aphids are tiny soft-bodied insects that such the juices of plants.

During the summer, you may find the stems and leaves of you garden plants crowded with tiny pear-shaped insects called aphids.  Another name for them is “plant lice.”

Aphids are among the most common insect pests of plants.  The aphid lives only to eat.

Its mouth is shaped into a sharp beak with which the insect pierce the plant’s leaf or stem and greedily sucks up the sap.

Aphids multiply so rapidly that hardly a green plant on earth would not be infested by them if the insects weren’t gobbled up in great numbers by such aphid enemies as ladybird beetles and aphid lions.

While aphids are harmful to plans, they are useful to many ants.

Most aphids produce a sweet liquid called honeydew which some ants love to eat.  By gently storing the aphid’s back with its antennae, the ant coaxes the aphid to give off droplets of honeydew, which are lapped up by the ant. Dick Rogers