Lost Ladybug Project

I’ve blogged a lot about lady beetles recently.  That’s because we have been inundated by them ever since moving to Illinois.  The beetle deluge is not a good thing, though, as ours are nearly all Harmonia axyridis, an extraordinarily pesty species imported from Asia in what must rank as one of the most poorly executed biological control projects ever.  In the wake of the alien lady beetle invasion, our native species have all but disappeared.

Enter the Lost Ladybug Project.  The project is a citizen-science initiative out of Cornell University to gather information on the distribution of various native and introduced species. Anyone can submit photos of lady beetles from around North America.  The project folks will identify them and log the location and date.

Although the results so far show a depressing dominance of European Coccinella septempunctata and Asian Harmonia, the database has received at least one record of the nine-spotted lady beetle, an insect that was once common but hadn’t been seen for 14 years.  If you’ve got some spare time and a camera, I highly recommend participating.

h/t Buggirl.

5 thoughts on “Lost Ladybug Project”

  1. I’d love to send him my photos but there’s a size limit and I could just as easily link them to him from my photobucket account.

  2. I could resize them but then I have an extra small copy of my files floating around. And what size should they be?

    This would be so much easier if he had just an E-mail that I could link, or even a forum. It’s just two or three pictures. The Great Sunflower project is another citizen science thing and they have a forum. The people participating in that actually have a person they can interact with. It’s not just a website … and who knows if anyone is still checking it.

    The fact that I have to fish through their site and find their E-mail (ladybug@cornell.edu) is poor design in my opinion. I’ll send my suggestions to them with links to the pictures.

    Also I’m going to start focusing on lady bugs more now. Thank you for bringing this topic up, Myrmecos.

  3. Pingback: Update on the Lost Lady Bug Project « Myrmecos Blog

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