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"M" ("W") often visible on pronotum is a helpful identifier of asian ladybird species. [C]occinellid beetle with red/orange or black wing elytra sporting 0 to 22 spots. Three color forms are especially common: red or orange with black spots (known as form succinea); black with four red spots (form spectabilis); and black with two red spots (form conspicua), although many other variants are also described. (Source: EOL)
Introduced to North America, this beetle is native to Asia. Prefers grasslands and flowering trees. Overwinters in homes and other secluded areas, sometimes in large groups numbering in the hundreds.
Because of their tendency to overwinter in large groups, this type of ladybird beetle is considered a housing pest. They may also cause damage to some crops by feeding on native pollinators. Originally intentionally introduced to aid in the control of aphids and scale insects, the beetles have grown too large in population, so threaten unintended prey.
Spotted on Oct 16, 2014
Submitted on Oct 27, 2014