Most people who’ve never had a ladybug infestation view ladybugs in a favorable way. Maybe it’s their brightly colored, spotted appearance, or maybe it’s because they simply seem so harmless. Ladybugs – sometimes referred to as lady beetles or ladybird beetles – are actually considered a beneficial insect. They feed heartily on many plant-eating insects such as aphids.

Not so fast. But with more than 5,000 known species of ladybugs worldwide, it figures that not all are welcome visitors. Some species, such as the squash beetle and the Mexican bean beetle, feed on the crops mentioned in their names. In addition, these insects tend to gather together in large numbers. Large masses of ladybugs in the house can be unsettling, to say the least, and a ladybug infestation can be difficult to get under control without professional help.

Ladybugs in the house. Several things can attract ladybugs to your home. If your landscaping includes flowering plants, they will likely attract aphids, the primary food source of ladybugs. Certain species of ladybugs also feed on pollen. The pollen helps them store energy to help them through their winter hibernation. Ladybugs must find a warm, comfortable place to hang out during the colder months of the year. If they decide your home is the place to be, they can easily find their way inside through cracks or openings around windows, doors, plumbing, utility lines, etc.

How to get rid of ladybugs in your house. If you’ve seen a few meandering around and they are not really bothering you, simply leave them alone. As the weather warms, they will find their way back outside. However, if even just a few is too many for you to tolerate, simply vacuum them up and discard the bag in a sealed trash container outside. If you have a ladybug infestation in your home, other measures will need to be taken. Here are a few things you can do.

Make sure doors have adequate weather stripping and that windows have tight-fitting screens. Caulk all potential openings on the outside of your home. If they never get inside, you won’t have to learn how to get rid of ladybugs in the house.

If you begin to see a few inside your home, more are likely to follow. Ladybugs give off a scent that attracts others to the area.

Trying to remove their odor can be nearly impossible since they may hide inside the walls of your home. Certain natural scents such as citronella or citrus oil will help repel ladybugs.

Yes, mums. Ladybugs don’t like them, so plant mums near windows and entranceways. The chemical compound found within these plants acts as a deterrent.

Place small bags of cloves, bay leaves, or a combination of the two, in areas that are heavily infested. Ladybugs don’t like the smell and it may help to send them packing.

Whether you have a ladybug infestation and want to know how to kill ladybugs or simply how to get rid of ladybugs, sometimes it’s best to ask for help. If ladybugs are bugging you, call the pest management professionals at Terminix® and let them help you show them the door.