A new group taking over campus isn’t your typical Lindenwood student. Ladybugs have been seen congregating around the Spellmann Center and Butler Library.
The spotted beetles have been finding their way inside buildings, and in some instances, they have been seen creeping across windowsills or buzzing around professors’ offices.
Ladybugs are harmless to humans, and they prey on aphids and scale insects, which can injure crops, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation website. They also eat the larvae of flies and caterpillars.
The sudden appearance of the ladybugs on campus probably has to do with the warm spells of weather the area experienced this winter.
Ladybugs most often come out in droves in the fall when cold weather precedes a warm spell, Rob Lawrence, the forest entomologist for the Missouri Department of Conservation, told lakeexpo.com.
This winter saw similar temperature cycles.
The bugs tend to overwinter in a warm place, and that can be under leaves or bark or on the sunny side of a building like the south side of Spellmann Center.
When the weather gets cold again, some ladybugs seek refuge from the chill inside, thus explaining why they might appear to be renting out a classroom or professor’s office for a few days.
Most students and faculty are unperturbed by the presence of ladybugs. However, Director of Campus Facilities Joyce Norman said some students had called the maintenance office to complain about the beetles inside their houses.
Students who are unsure what to make of the ladybug sightings might consider hanging out with a few of the beetles in Spellmann; some cultures say they bring good luck.