Home Plant Pests Ladybugs vs. Asian Lady Beetles

Ladybugs vs. Asian Lady Beetles – GIY Plants

Asian lady beetle crawling on tree trunk. Ladybug vs asian lady beetle.

Ladybugs and Asian Lady Beetles are insects that are often mistaken for each other due to their similar appearance. However, there are key differences between these bugs that are worth exploring. In this article, we will delve into the world of Ladybugs and Asian Lady Beetles, helping you to tell the difference between these two insects.


Ladybug on lavender flower.

Ladybugs, also known as ladybirds, are small insects native to various parts of the world. They are bright red or orange with black spots, often seen in gardens and fields. Ladybugs are beneficial insects that eat pests like aphids and scale insects, making them a gardener’s best friend.

Asian Lady Beetles

Asian lady beetle on yellow flower. Asian lady beetle vs ladybug.

On the other hand, the Asian Lady Beetle, also known as the multicolored Asian lady beetle, is an invasive species introduced to North America to control pests. They look similar to native ladybugs but are usually larger, and their color varies from yellow to red. They also have a marking behind the head that looks like an “M” or “W,” which is a telltale sign you’re dealing with an Asian Lady Beetle.

Ladybug vs. Asian Lady Beetle


One of the easiest ways to tell Asian Lady Beetles and Ladybugs apart is by their appearance. While both bugs have a similar shape and size, there are differences in their color and markings. Ladybugs are bright red with black spots, while the color of Asian Lady Beetles varies from yellow to red, and their spot marking varies in size.


Another difference between Ladybugs and Asian Lady Beetles is their behavior. While both bugs eat aphids, Asian Lady Beetles are known to be more aggressive and can bite by scraping the skin they land on. They also overwinter in large groups, often sneaking into homes to find a warm place. This can lead to an Asian Lady Beetle infestation, a nuisance for homeowners.

Impact on Homes and Gardens

While Ladybugs are generally beneficial for gardens as they control pests, Asian Lady Beetles can become a nuisance when they infest homes. They can stain surfaces and trigger minor allergic reactions in some people. When threatened, they also emit a foul-smelling yellow liquid from their leg joints, which can stain surfaces like windows and siding.

How to Get Rid of Asian Lady Beetles

Suppose you find Asian Lady Beetles congregating in or around your home in the fall or winter. In that case, it’s important to prevent an infestation. You can vacuum up the beetles and dispose of the bag outside. For larger infestations, contacting a local pest control company may be necessary.

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I tell the difference between ladybugs and Asian lady beetles?

Ladybugs and Asian lady beetles look similar at first glance. Still, key differences can help you identify which is which. Ladybugs are rounder and typically red or orange with black spots. Asian lady beetles can come in various colors, including red, orange, and yellow. Still, they always have black spots on their bodies. Additionally, Asian lady beetles tend to be more aggressive than ladybugs.

What should I do if there is an Asian lady beetle infestation in my home or garden?

Suppose you are facing an Asian lady beetle infestation. In that case, hiring professional pest control services is recommended to help you deal with the problem. They have the expertise and tools to eliminate the infestation and prevent future occurrences effectively.

Can Asian lady beetle bite?

Yes, Asian lady beetles can bite if they feel threatened. Although their bites are generally harmless to humans, some individuals may experience allergic reactions or irritation. It is best to avoid handling Asian lady beetles and seek professional help if you have a large infestation.

Are ladybugs and Asian lady beetles native species?

Ladybugs are native species in many parts of the world and have been long considered beneficial insects in gardens. Asian lady beetles, however, are not native to certain regions and were introduced as a means of biological pest control. They have become invasive in some areas, causing concerns for homeowners and gardeners.

Can ladybugs and Asian lady beetles cause any harm to plants or gardens?

Ladybugs are generally beneficial to gardens as they feed on aphids, which can cause damage to plants. However, Asian lady beetles can become a nuisance and may cause harm to plants if they gather in large numbers. Their aggressive behavior and feeding habits can result in plant damage in some cases.

What can I do to prevent Asian lady beetles from entering my home?

To prevent Asian lady beetles from entering your home, you can seal any cracks or openings in doors, windows, and walls. Additionally, ensure that screens on windows and doors are in good condition and free from gaps. Regularly inspect your home’s exterior and use insect repellents if needed.

Do ladybugs and Asian lady beetles feed on the same garden pests?

Ladybugs primarily feed on aphids, which are known as garden pests. Asian lady beetles also feed on aphids but have a broader diet. They can consume other small insects and plant materials as well. Both ladybugs and Asian lady beetles can be beneficial in controlling certain garden pests.


In conclusion, while Ladybugs and Asian Lady Beetles may look similar, they have key differences in appearance, behavior, and impact on homes and gardens. You can better manage these bugs in your garden and home by understanding these differences.

Whether you’re dealing with the native Ladybug or the invasive Asian Lady Beetle, it’s important to remember that these insects play a crucial role in our ecosystem.

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