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Question and Answer ArticleLadybug Trap

Published: June 1, 2007
webladybug
Photo by Jennifer Oehle
Q: In your March 2006 issue you had an article written by Nancy Cain, "Ladybug Invasion." In the article she states that you can trap the ladybugs with a commercially available ladybug trap that uses either a black light or a special-wavelength UV fluorescent light. My question is: What is the name of these commercially available traps, and where can they be purchased?
– K.R. McCrosson, via e-mail


A: Remember when a ladybug crawling across the floor used to be a charming sight? When you would smile while coaxing the little visitor to crawl across your hand? With the over-influx of the Asian Lady Beetle, those days are long gone. Like Nancy stated in her article: one is cute, 20,000 are obnoxious!
   
The Asian Ladybug trap by BioCare is one of several traps on the market and is widely available at hardware and garden stores. It uses UV light and a pheromone to lure ladybugs into a collection jar. Put it in an area a few feet off the floor that’s especially popular with ladybugs and try to keep that area dark, as other light sources will diminish the attractiveness of the UV light.

If the trap is empty after a few days, try a new spot. The bugs can be trapped alive so you can move them outdoors. Try putting them in your garden so they can eat plant-harming aphids! The Asian Ladybug trap costs about $35. The pheromone lures need to be replaced every month or so and cost about $5.
   
Ladybug traps can be effective up to a point, but if your infestation is particularly vexing, you should investigate where the bugs may be entering your home and “exclude” them. “Exclusion” is the fancy entomological term for keeping bugs out. Check for holes in your screens; apply caulk around windows, doors, siding and fascia; and seal utility openings where pipes, phone lines and the like may be providing a gateway for the ladybugs.

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