Ladybirds at my hive

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i thought a ladybird had stubble on the landing board by mistake only to see the bees defending the entrance as she was trying get in only to find about 5 ladybirds around the hive trying to get in as well, has anyone had the same thing happen or is it a common thing ladybirds trying the steal honey/seek refuge :grouphug:
 

Queens59 

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Odd you should ask - I realised today that there are quite a number of ladybirds around my hive. Next time I look I'll check what they are up to, probably trying to find a snuggly corner for winter...
 

Brian Bush 

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I was checking my hives and feeding yesterday. One hive had 20+ ladybirds of three different types on the underside of the roof. They have obviously found a way in and preparing to use the hive as winter quarters. I do not think thay can do any harm so left them where they were.
 

Russel 

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Ladybirds/bugs are predators, they just maybe looking for a winter shelter or could they picking up any varroa etc fall out after treatment.
 

Mike a 

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Ladybirds/bugs are predators, they just maybe looking for a winter shelter or could they picking up any varroa etc fall out after treatment.
Interesting thought, a predator who can co-exist with the bees in a hive to deal with varroa.
 

Russel 

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Mike, I wish but you never know.
Any entomologists here that could throw some light on this.
 

Philip 

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British native or perhaps the incomer Harliquin ladybird. I do not know about the British types but I believe the incomer behaves by grouping to hibernate, perhaps they all recognise a good spot when they see one.

A useful site link
http://www.harlequin-survey.org/recognition_and_distinction.htm
to help with Id of the type, interesting thought scavenging varroa mite, probably just found a warm sheltered spot to kip for the winter, provided the bees tolerate them.

If they are harlequins and are all gathered together then perhaps you might think it worth giving he British ones a hand as they are quite aggressive and out compete the natives.

A bit like the grey v red squirrels situation.

regards
 

Rollo P 

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Almost certainly the Harlequin Ladybird, which likes to congregate in numbers for overwintering. If disturbed they will emit a pungent odour which can be quite clinging.
These Ladybirds are very variable in their colouring and spots, but they are all similar size as our common 7-spot.
They mainly eat tree aphids and are not a real threat to our native Ladybirds untill their preferred food source is exhausted. In spring they are often seen on Broad Beans along with our 7-spot co-existing quite happily.
 

Heather 

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Aahhh! As in previous years they come through my double glazing :banghead: and into my bedroom- about 40 on the inside window.... I dont like to just throw them out as they are trying to hibernate I presume...any ideas? If I put them into a box they just leave it and return to their old site- and back to my windows. I have a hung tiled house so that is where they come from- why cannot they stay there :cuss:
 

Storm™ 

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Because they feed on aphids and aphids produce sugar which the bees harvest as well could it be that some of your stores are actually honey made from this sugar. It has a special name which I cannot remember just yet. Honeydew honey? Maybe they are picking up on the smell of it and are gathering to try and get what they think are aphids?

Aphid habits in October:

In October the females lay eggs usually on the stems of trees or shrubs. The eggs are black, with thick shells and can withstand extremes of temperature. It is in the egg form only that aphids pass the winter. In March the eggs hatch out into wingless female nymphs which are similar to the adults, with three pairs of legs, compound eyes, antennae, etc.

Heather - from garden centres you can get small bamboo clusters glued together. Sold as bee houses for the mason bee. Initially however they used to be sold as insect houses or rests. Overnight shelters. Lady birds use these also - seen quite a few in ours.

source:

http://www.biology-resources.com/aphid-01.html
 
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Heather 

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Storm- you have pricked my conscience and kicked me into action. Old garden canes broken to short pieces packed into a disused bird box (rescued Bumble nest from frantic phone caller)is my job for today. Never buy when you can make...
 

Rollo P 

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Harlequin Ladybirds do congregate in houses in various places including the folds of curtains and other nooks and crannies around windows open for ventilation purposes. The best way to get rid of them,e.g. in a bedroom, is to use a vacum cleaner. They may make the bag smell, but this can be discarded in the usual way.
Bees can make honey from the sugars excreted by aphids. It is popular in Germany. NewZealand produce a lot of it from Beech Forests. The honey is not unpleasant and has a faint taste of figs.
 

Heather 

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I have about 6 different varieties within the confines of one group- when I open a window about 30 are gathered in an immobile collection- and maybe 10 wandering over the window and ceiling. When it warms up the 30-40 are all over the inside of my bedroom window- but they do regroup at night.:hurray:
 

tonybloke 

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I have found large groups of seven-spot ladybirds over-wintering in sash window frames. It's not only the harlequins that do it.
 

MuswellMetro 

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got a plague in one hive, of about 100 Harlequin ladybird (Harmonia axyridis} all mixed colours, never had them in the hive before last year, so the invasion of them from the south coast must have just reached this area in 2007-2008

so expect them soon in a hive near you, if you have not got them yet http://www.harlequin-survey.org/spread.htm

interestingly it is the biggest colony and warmest position hive then have entered, under the frames, under the top bars, in corner, on the crown board, in the feeder
 
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kazmcc 

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How odd! I noticed a lot of 7 spot ladybirds on our hive yesterday. We only took the roof off but didn't see any inside or on the cb, but there were quite a lot, about 20, on the back and side of the hive itself. I've never seen so many lb's in one place.
 

keithgrimes 

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Harlequin Ladybirds do congregate in houses in various places including the folds of curtains and other nooks and crannies around windows open for ventilation purposes. The best way to get rid of them,e.g. in a bedroom, is to use a vacum cleaner. They may make the bag smell, but this can be discarded in the usual way.
Bees can make honey from the sugars excreted by aphids. It is popular in Germany. NewZealand produce a lot of it from Beech Forests. The honey is not unpleasant and has a faint taste of figs.
Thats what honeydew is.
 

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