Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wildlife Wednesday - black ladybird

Okay, call me paranoid, but I think critters are coming into my yard just to frustrate me! I have more bugs I've never seen before and have no idea what they are. Do you think it's revenge of the insects?

Today's specimen is a black ladybird. Usually the ladybirds I see are orange with lots of black spots...but this one is black with a couple of yellow spots.

So, off I go to Google and investigate!

Gardening Australia is going to enlighten me today with their fact sheet on lady birds. You can click the GA link to go there, or I'll summarise.

There are 100 species of Ladybirds in Australia!! Holy cow.

There are four common garden species. And the one in my photo might be this one:
The fungus eating ladybird has very bold black and yellow colouration. Both adults and larvae feed on mildew fungus, which is a really common problem in gardens.

Oh, CSIRO has a ladybird page. It's here.

CSIRO says there are over 500 species in Australia on ladybirds!!!

They lay eggs, some species up to 100 eggs. Once hatched, they have larva and pupal stages that don't last very long (only a few days to a fortnight) before they become the adult beetle we see. Males mate within a few days of emerging into an adult. Copulation can last 15-60 minutes, and sometimes hours or days (that's some serious sex time for a tiny beetle!).

Oh...this site is a dream. They have images to compare species.

And this isn't a fungus-eating ladybird. So it's something else judging from the images. But I can't tell you what because I got distracted... OMG! One of the images you can choose is penis. Of course I clicked - and it's fairly safe to do so as long as the word penis doesn't bother you. You can click here.

Some of the shapes are beautiful. Like some intricately carved piece. Some species more elaborate than others. Oh my! Naughty Ninjas, I'll send this to you!! Naughty Nature at it's best and most beautiful!

Okay, I'm off to examine more now. Enjoy :)

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