Have you seen a lady bug larva and did you know they pupate?

Before lady bugs reach adulthood and resemble the red domed beetles we love, they go through a few metamorphosis. Lady bugs begin as an egg usually on the underside of a leaf and will hatch between 3 - 10 days depending on climate. As a larvae, they bare no resemblance to their adult form and look more like a tiny alligator with spikes. They are born with a great appetite and will consume their egg shells as their first meal and then proceed to feeding on 3 - 4 hundred aphids during this phase. Within a month, they will grow and molt 4 times reaching the final instar shown in this video and ready to pupate.

The larvae will find a suitable leaf to attach belly first and shed their exoskeleton as the pupating process begins.

They will stay motionless in this vulnerable position for up to 15 days while their bodies break down and reformed into an adult lady bug as we know it.

Lady Bug Pupating - Nature Treasure Hunter
Lady Bug pupa

When the transformation is complete, the adult lady bug will emerge pale or golden color with no black spots.

Lady Bug - Nature Treasure Hunter
Adult Lady Bug newly emerged with no dots
Adult lady bug - Nature Treasure Hunter
Adult lady bug hardening exoskeleton on pupa

As their exoskeleton hardens, the dots will darken and eventually become our beloved lady bug.

Nature Treasure Hunter
Adult Lady Bug transformation complete

#ladybug #ladybuglarvae #ladybugpupa #ladybugpupating

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