2016’s ladybug invasion

ladybeetle, lake erie, lady bird, beetle

Three years ago I wandering around the beach near my house when I stumbled upon tons and tons of ladybugs. It was CRAZY. I took lots of photos to document this unique event! (Photos of 2013’s ladybug invasion.) I went back to the same spot two days after my discovery only to find they were all gone. I had never seen anything like it in my life. In the three years and oodles of trips to the beach since, I haven’t seen anything like it again… until last weekend!

Jeff and I had some time between plans and figured we’d hit up our new favorite spot to look for beach glass. Can I just mention how much I love the fact that he’s into this too?! So much fun! The tide was all wrong for finding glass but Jeff quickly spotted a few ladybugs which he pointed out to me. I bent down to check them out and realized there was just a whole little world of them in the sand. Everywhere I looked I kept finding more of them.

ladybird, ladybeetle, ladybugs on beach
Compared to my 2013 photos, this is nothing but there is no denying that is A LOT of beetles! I remember researching why this phenomenon happens back when I first discovered it only to not find any real answers. Apparently there hasn’t been much new information on the subject since. The cause is still debated with some claiming they get washed in from the lake, and others claiming the ladybugs are gathering at the shore from land. The thing that is most interesting to me is that it happens all over! I found an article about a big wash up in California and apparently one of the largest wash ups on record happened in Egypt in 1939. 4500 million of them on a thirteen mile stretch of beach! Can you even imagine that? Even to me, someone who really loves beetles, that sounds terrifying.
While switching back and forth between tabs of old posts, I realized that 2013’s wash up in Geneva happened in September! Perhaps this is something that happens twice a year? Once when the weather begins to warm up and again when it cools off. I don’t know but it’s certainly interesting. I just happened to glance up at the date assuming that the older post would have had to have happened in April as well but nope!
lake erie lady bug,
lady beetle, ladybird,
lake erie beach, ladybeetle

I haven’t made it back to the beach since finding these little guys but I’m sure they’re already gone. Dead ones washed back into the lake and the living flown away to find food. Ladybug wash ups seem to mysterious to me. I feel lucky to have been able to see it twice in my life so far, hopefully this isn’t my last! I sure wouldn’t mind experiencing another monarch migration either!

PS. Did you know that if a ladybug lands on you it’s supposed to bring good luck? Well after hanging out near these little dudes to shoot some photos I guess I’ve a lot of good luck on my side. 

Author: Kaylah

Just a green haired gal from Cleveland, Ohio.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  • They are Asian ladybugs which are an invasive species here in the united states. I used to have my whole outside apartment wall covered in them, literally just hundreds and they'd get inside. Haha sorry for the huge paragraph, I took entomology and learned all about these ladybugs, they used to drive me nuts getting in the apartment. It happens all over the u.s. pretty much. A lot of them were introduced to control aphid problems on crops and in gardens. A lot of garden centers even sell live boxes of them. They don't really do any harm besides displacing native ladybugs and getting inside houses though!

  • The are actually an invasive insect, Asian beetles. They have infested my house so badly, I vacuum up at least 100+ a day. They smell horrible, and leave muck trails all over the walls. They're extremely bothersome. They're on everything in my house… dishes, clothes, plants. They land in our food, and on us.
    These are not Ladybugs, unfortunately. I haven't seen a true Ladybug in years.

  • They bite as well. Around our house (in Upper Michigan) when it warms up they are all over everything. You can't go outside without them flying all over and bounching off of you. And more than likely biting you.

  • Lovely photos! I have to admit though, I have an ongoing battle with those $%#& Asian Ladybeetles. I live in Erie, PA so not far away, and I have a 215-year-old farmhouse that is CONSTANTLY full of those lady beetles. I can seriously vacuum our window sills multiple times per day, and I still find dead ones everywhere. It's incredibly frustrating!! Part of the "charm" of living in the country though, I guess πŸ˜‰
    – Amanda / http://www.littleredfarmstead.com

  • That's super strange! I remember years ago I was on the Outer Banks beaches in North Carolina and there were thousands of DEAD ladybugs on the sand πŸ™ It was so strange and I couldn't find any info on it and I go to that beach nearly every year and have never seen it before or since.. But I think they're really cute and am loving your photos of them!

  • I remember when I was little we lived in a town house in VA and once a year our house would be covered in lady bugs – inside and out. And it was just our house, too! We were on the very end, and our front windows would all be covered. I remember always liking it, like it was some magical thing.

  • Love this! So cool that you documented it too & also that you have seen it again now, after 2013. I just looked at that blogpost too and wow, sooooo many ladybugs! Also that picture of your hand and the ladybugs, wow.. And don't forget the one with the butterfly.
    Ladybugs are some of my favorite animals, so I just love this blogpost πŸ™‚ but as you said, that record in Egypt of 4500 milion sounds like too much, haha.
    By the way, nice to know about when a ladybug lands on you it is supposed to bring good luck πŸ™‚ makes it even more of a favorite animal.