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Ladybugs Spring 2022

Ladybugs are by far the most sot after biological control for aphids, spider mites, leafhoppers, mealybugs and so much more. It is almost a daily occurrence at Early’s we receive an inquiry on availability. Many growers use them for indoor as well as outdoors garden spaces. In the past we were able to source ladybugs in quantities of 30,000 exclusively for commercial use. Most recently we had been getting packages of ladybugs for domestic yard and gardens, in groups of 250 or 1000. However, they have not been available since 2020!

Why are they currently unavailable? The short answer is, there is not enough to be had. Unlike our other biological controls, that are mass produced in large facilities, ladybugs seem to be difficult to “farm”. They typically only thrive & reproduce on ideal conditions with an appropriate food source, making it hard to mimic these conditions artificially. For this reason, many suppliers “collect or pick” wild ladybugs from their natural habitats. Sadly, due to very dry conditions & wildfires in the western states where most of our ladybugs are collected from, many of the natural habitats have been disrupted.

In the meantime, it is not impossible to collect your own ladybugs, just a bit time consuming. So far this spring I have seen more ladybugs roaming around in Saskatchewan that I have in the last two years, so hopefully the conditions continue to be favourable for their return.  There are other biological controls available to special order, and they can take 1-2 weeks to have in stock. Most bios are sold in fairly large quantities for commercial use; however, some may be suitable for your growing conditions. Our experts would be happy to chat with you about the options available and discuss whether using biological controls would be beneficial for your situation. Stay tuned to our website and social media for updates on availability in the near future!

Ladybug FAQ’s

-Audra – Early’s Bio Expert.