Did you know Lady birds are named for the Virgin Mary
Spotting a colorful ladybug is a sure sign that the cold of winter is gone and the warmth of summer has been ushered in. Farmers and gardeners alike love the insect for keeping away pests that eat their plants. Having one land on you even means good luck in popular folklore. But have you ever wondered just how the tiny beetle got its name? It might surprise you that the ladybug actually takes its name after the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Humanity’s agricultural endeavors have long been intertwined symbiotically with insects and other creatures that protect crops. While today ladybugs are often used as organic pest control for home gardeners and farmers, hundreds of year ago before the advent of pesticides they were often depended upon to safeguard the harvests.
“Locusts came, grasshoppers without number. They devoured every plant in the land; they devoured the crops of their fields.” – Psalms 105:34-35…[..]
And Can Be DeadlyIf food is scarce, ladybugs will do what they must to survive, even if it means eating each other. A hungry ladybug will make a meal of any soft-bodied sibling it encounters. Newly emerged adults or recently molted larvae are soft enough for the average ladybug to chew. Eggs or pupae also provide protein to a ladybug that has run out of aphids. In fact, scientists believe that ladybugs will deliberately lay infertile eggs as a ready source of food for their young hatchlings. When times are tough, a ladybug may lay an increased number of infertile eggs to give her babies a better chance of surviving.
Lady Birds of Australia
Welcome to the ‘Ladybirds of Australia Web Site’. What follows is a brief description of how the site is organized.
The tabs across the top of the page are consistent over the whole site. From these tabs, you can access lists of tribes, genera and species, view a species image gallery, access a ladybird morphology tool (in a new window), use ladybird identification software (LucID), access a compare feature that looks at the main structures of three different genera side by side and finally, use a search function to find ladybird taxa. [ ]
Image of the virgin: Attribution: Bernardo Daddi, Triptych: The Virgin and Child Enthroned with Saints, tempera and gold leaf on panel, dated 1338; in the Courtauld Gallery; composite, showing the triptych both closed and open