These Swarming Lady Bugs Take Over Towns to Residents' Dismay

Besieged residents sweep away lady bugs by the thousands.

ByJohn Fischer
November 07, 2014, 12:12 PM

— -- A swarm of ladybugs in western Romania has grown into a full blown-invasion, and there's nothing cute about it.

Villagers throughout Arad County can be founding sweeping piles of the red insects from carpets and rugs with thousands more spread out across walls, floors, sinks and drains.

PHOTO: Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Courtesy Televiziunea Romana

Experts there told Romania-Insider.com that the summer rainfall season may be the reason for the invasion.

John Losey, an associate professor for the Department of Entomology at Cornell University, says lush environments often attract many insects, including plant lice called aphids, which ladybugs prey on.

PHOTO: Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Courtesy Televiziunea Romana

"A good year for plants is a good year for aphids and a good year for aphids is a good year for lady bugs," he told ABC News.

PHOTO: Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Courtesy Televiziunea Romana

Lady bugs are often beneficial in communities, helping to protect crops by eating pests that ruin them and may be taking up spaces in homes where they can hibernate, Losey added.

"They're cued in more and more into how long the day is," he said. "As the days get shorter, they know winter is coming."

PHOTO: Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Courtesy Televiziunea Romana

Losey is the director for the Lost Lady Bug project, an organization dedicated to protecting and preserving lady bug species. He says people can often get rid of lady bugs by vacuuming them up and disposing of them outside.

PHOTO: Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Townspeople in Western Romania are in distress over the invasion of lady bugs that have swarmed their homes and streets.
Courtesy Televiziunea Romana

Mayor Mircea Jichici of Lipova, a town in Arad County, told Romania-Insider.com his town had never seen such a high number.

“The forest is close to the town and that’s where they come from,” he said.

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