The Twice-Stabbed Lady Beetle is an excellent friend to gardeners thanks to its ability to hunt and consume plant-harming bugs at an astonishing rate.
The twin red spots on the shiny black elytra of the Twice-Stabbed Lady Beetle help in identifying it. Don't be fooled by its name; this beetle sports strong mouthparts capable of chewing through the tough armor-like exoskeletons of many other insects. This makes it a tremendous ally to gardeners and growers. The beetle naturally and organically rids plants of pests that may ruin leaves and fruit, or possibly kill the plant. They prey on scale and other things that can infect plants with fungi or viruses. Females place their fertilized eggs ain in the empty carcasses of scale insects for protection.
Females are able to emit a noxious substance from their legs and they have a reputation for tasting bad. These two defense mechanisms reduce the likelihood of predation by birds or other small animals. Gardeners should be sure to recognize this Lady Beetle and not mistake it for obnoxious Asian Multi-colored Lady Beetles (the multi-spotted, stinky species known for moving into homes and buildings for shelter).
Scientific Name: Chilocorus stigma
Size (Adult; Length): 3mm to 5mm (0.12in to 0.20in)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
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.