A rosy shade of pink highlights the large black dots on the social Pink-spotted Lady Beetle.
The Pink-spotted Lady Beetle can be seen visiting flowers, where it might collect half of its diet from pollen. Pollen grains from squash and corn, as well as dandelion and lily plants are all delicious sources of nutrition. The other half of its diet consists of the pesky insects that can harm plants health, aesthetics, or both. Like other lady beetles, this species is a beneficial insect to have in a garden or crop field thanks to its ability to naturally control pests like aphids, mites, bean and potato beetles, and cabbageworms.
Color shade is a deep pink, bordering on red. A small pink-red triangle sits on the head between its eyes. Twelve black spots sit on the wing coverings with two connecting at the midline, so it may look like ten spots when the wings are closed (rows of 3 spots then 2 spots, then 3 spots and 2 spots). Two large black spots also decorate the tapered pink pronotum. Unlike more common dome-shaped Lady Beetles, the shape of this one is broken into 3 distinguishable segments: head, pronotum, abdomen.
Hungry larvae are black with yellow-orange spots and a ring around the middle of its long, spiky abdomen. The long legs of a larva move quickly as it scans along plant stems and leaves looking for food. Its large appetite helped its Lady Beetle family become known as gardeners' friends.
Scientific Name: Coleomegilla maculata
Other Name(s): Twelve-spotted Lady Beetle
Size (Adult; Length): 5mm to 6mm (0.20in to 0.23in)
Colors: red, pink, black
Descriptors: pink, black dots, heart, spots, twelve, 12, flying
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Antennae: Beetles have a pair of antennae on the head used as sensors.
Head: The head is home to the insect's eyes, antennae, and mandibles (jaws).
Thorax: Holds the three pairs of legs as well as vital internal organs.
Elytron: One of two wing cases on a Beetle that protects its wings (plural: elytra).
Wings: Appendages used for flying and kept under the elytra until needed.
Abdomen: Houses organs related to circulation, reproduction, and excretion.
Legs: Beetles have three pairs of legs located at the thorax, numbering six legs in all.