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LADYBIRDS AROUND MY WINDOW FRAMES

LADYBIRDS AROUND MY WINDOW FRAMES

We usually receive a few calls about this time each year asking about ladybirds hiding around the frames of people’s windows. Are they safe? How can they be destroyed? How can they be prevented from coming back?

Before you think of destroying them – stop!

Ladybirds are an important part of the garden food chain. They are a natural insecticide and feed on all those creepy crawleys that devour your plants. Why would you want to kill them?

Ladybirds need somewhere to over-winter, so they will try and find a dark, sheltered spot to lie dormant during the colder months. This could be under a log, behind a shed, or in the gap between a casement and a window frame. Many species like to clump together in groups, so you could find tens of ladybirds in a single huddle in a dark corner. Nobody knows quite why they do this, but it is probably a way of protecting themselves.

If you have older windows you might find some of the insects get into you house and this can be a concern for some people. Modern windows should have good weather seals around the perimeter so this will ensure the ladybirds can’t get all the way inside your home.

If you find you have ladybirds around your window frames, all you need to do is carefully scrape them into a jam jar using a soft brush, and find a suitable, sheltered spot for them to hide out in the garden. Pop them somewhere safe and they will take care of themselves, and come spring they will thank you for it by eating all the aphids!

If you are lucky enough to have a good sized garden and want to go one step further, consider devoting a little patch to wilder plants like nettles, under the leaves of which ladybirds like to lay their eggs. You can also plant some wild flowers which will help attract other useful insect like bees.

Insects are in sharp decline in the UK and they need all the help they can get.

One exception to the above is the Harlequin ladybird. This is an invasive species not indigenous to the UK, and threatens many of the other 45 species we have living in this country. The UK ladybird survey is mapping the spread of the Harlequin ladybird. Find out more, including how to identify the Harlequin ladybird and take part in the survey at http://www.ladybird-survey.org/.

Alternatively, if you have drafty old windows that let in all sorts of creepy crawlees, why not give us a call today and see how Woodland can help you?

 

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