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Ladybug Problem

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    LESLIE: Now we welcome Dave from Pennsylvania to The Money Pit.

    Dave, how can we help?

    DAVE: I have a problem with ladybugs in the springtime. They appear in my kitchen and they appear in my family room down on the first floor, in the basement. And they just congregate and then they die and you just take a vacuum cleaner and vacuum them up and they go away. It seems like after a surge in temperature, I get hit with them and then they go away. I’ve tried fogging the basement and I’ve tried putting Q-Tips in my windows where the strings go that hold the tracks and – to stop them from getting any access into the room but they still seem to find a way into the room and I was curious to know if you folks had seen a similar problem on what I can do about it.

    TOM: Actually, it sounds like a very common problem that we hear a lot about. Those are called Asian lady beetles and they typically hatch – the eggs get laid and they hatch in like three to five days. So when the lady bug lays their eggs, they usually lay about 20 or so eggs and they all hatch in a very short period of time and then they run for cover inside your house.

    One of the nasty things about those beetles is if you squash them or if they get sprayed with insecticide and sit anywhere, they leave like an orange stain and they can emit this odor that’s really, really smelly, too. So most people say to simply sweep them up like you’re doing them.

    If you want to get rid of them or try to deter them from coming in, there are some pesticide products that are available over the counter that can help.

    LESLIE: Yeah, one that comes highly recommended is called Demon WP and it’s a spray-on product and you use it on your windowsills, on your baseboards, on your doorsills, anywhere you see these Asian beetles persisting in the house. And if you can spray it directly on the beetle, it helps, of course, but it also works in a preventative manner. So it actually does get rid of them and prevent them from coming in a little bit.

    Also, try not to squish them because you’ll get that yellow stain. Also, if you vacuum them up, sometimes they get agitated in the vacuum and will still emit that yellow stain and that smell, which sort of can damage your vacuum. So a good trick, if you’re sticking to your vacuum being as your method of fighting them, is to take like a pantyhose, like a knee-hi, and stick it in the extension hose of the vacuum and rubberband it over the edge so that the stocking itself goes up the hose but it’s connected on the outside so you can still grab a little bit of it.

    TOM: It’s like a filter.

    LESLIE: Right. And as you vacuum them up, they’ll get trapped in there but they won’t get all freaked out from being inside the vacuum and then damage the vacuum. So this way you can just sort of dispose of them.

    TOM: But Dave, here’s another important tip. After you do collect the ladybugs in your wife’s stocking (Leslie laughs), don’t put the stocking back in her drawer. (Dave laughs)

    LESLIE: Yeah, buy one special or use the old ones.

    DAVE: I like the way you think. I’ve been married 39 years. That would be cool. (Tom laughs)

    TOM: (overlapping voices) He’d do that, right?

    LESLIE: No! Put the ladybugs in the hose back in the drawer.

    TOM: He’s like, “Man, I didn’t think of that one. That’s a good one, Tom.” (Dave and Tom laugh)

    LESLIE: No. You’re causing trouble, Tom.

    TOM: Dave, thanks so much for calling us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974.

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