7-spot Ladybird

Coccinella septempunctata

7-spot Ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata)

One of Britain’s commonest ladybirds. Brightly coloured red with seven spots on the elytra (wing cases) warns predators that they taste nasty. They can also play dead and secrete a toxin when threatened. Length up to 9mm.

7-spot Ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata)

After mating eggs are laid, and the larva or grub emerges after about a week. After around three to four weeks pupation takes place in a hard casing. Another week on and the adult beetle finally emerges. It takes a few days before the wing cases harden and the bright colouration and markings express themselves. Both the larva and the adult insect hunt and consume large numbers of  aphids and scale insects. They are a true farmer’s and gardener’s friend. One ladybird can devour up to 50 aphids a day.

7-spot Ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata)

They hibernate over winter in close clusters in sheds or cellars, or under tree bark, and are active March to October. They live in a wide range of habitats including gardens, hedgerows and meadows. Widespread and the most common of all the UK’s ladybirds.

7-spot Ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata) larva

Photograph taken of 7-spot Ladybird (Coccinella septempunctata) May 2014 and June 2016, local woodland margin and rear garden, Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman 2014 & 2016. Camera used Nikon D3200, with Sigma 105mm macro lens.

12 thoughts on “7-spot Ladybird

      1. Pleasure. I came across a very pale spotless Ladybird earlier this year. It had just emerged and according to a site I found, the spots would only begin to appear in a few hours.
        Never seen anything like it before.

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Yes, I have seen this before some years ago after observing a 7-spot Ladybird emerge from its casing. It was bright yellow and then the colours eventually appeared. Amazing at how nature does its thing.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Indeed. I only wish the ladybird had hung around long enough for me to witness the spots emerge. However, she was perched on an aloe and disappeared.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I use a Sigma 105mm macro lens. It has great image stabilisation, which is ideal for me for I don’t use a tripod as most folk advise. I like to take images in the moment, and tripod just gets in the way for me. The lens is also very sharp.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you very much 🙂 This is one of my favourite of the ladybirds/bugs. It is nice to know that you ask them to bring their friends when you see them 🙂

      Like

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