The ladybird life cycle

The diagram below illustrates the life of a ladybird.

 Diagram illustrating ladybird life cycle.

  • October-February: Adult ladybirds spend winter in a dormant state, known as 'overwintering'.
  • March-April: Adult ladybirds become active and leave their overwintering sites to find food.
  • May: Male and female ladybirds mate.
  • June-July: Mated females lay eggs which hatch into immature stages called 'larvae' which pass through four instars (stages) and then form 'pupae'.
  • August: The new generation of adult ladybirds emerge from the pupae.
  • September: These new adults feed but do not mate until next spring after they have overwintered.

The description above is relevant to species of ladybirds that only have one generation per year but it should be noted that some species of ladybirds have more than one generation in a year.