Help us find a new species spreading in our region. Read more...
It's often the case that people think there is only one kind of Ladybird, and they are surprised when they find out how many different species there are (even if they're not all red and black). Big changes are happening the the Ladybird world, and most people are aware of the arrival of the Harlequin Ladybird (Harmonia axyridis) and the consequences for our native species. But there are other new Ladybirds out there and one of these is the Adonis' Ladybird, Hippodamia variegata.
This species is native to Europe but has been introduced to many countries worldwide and is rapidly becoming a global species. Adonis likes warmer weather and in the UK its stronghold has been in the south east, but it seems to have taken full advantage of the summer of 2018 and there have been lots of reports from further north, including Leicestershire. This is a small ladybird, measuring only 4 to 5 mm, with red elytra (wing cases) and anywhere from 3 and 15 black spots, which are sometimes fused together and tend to be concentrated to the rear. It could be confused with the 7 Spot Ladybird but the Adonis is smaller and more elongate.
We'd like to keep any eye on this species, so please have a look at the Ladybirds you see on your travels and send us all your Ladybird records.