The “multi-colored Asian lady beetle” loves to eat aphids & other insects.

It is perfectly natural, then, to see several scuttling larvae on the compost pile.

But, like much of the flora here on Little Crum Creek, Harmonia axyridis is a recent arrival.

After several years of attempts, the beetle was successfully introduced to the United States as a pest control in the 1980s. 

Overwintering populations in Pennsylvania were first observed in 1993.

Now, each spring & summer (and maybe even fall), we host several generations of lady bug.






split skin



I.discovered this larva attached to a tarp on June 2nd and decided to shelter it for safekeeping. 

By June 5th, it had reached the pupal stage.

Four days later, I noticed the split skin and spotted our recently emerged beetle walking across a table top.

Its coloring was still pale, and perhaps the shell hadn’t fully hardened, but I was anxious to return the adult ladybug to its chosen environment.


Back out at the bug-rich compost pile, where its mother had likely laid her eggs and our larva had attached itself to the tarp just days before, we shared a bit of face time before parting.