Dr. Mary Gardiner, assistant professor at the Ohio State University, visited ISU and gave a seminar about her research on the ladybeetles. Ladybeetles can play a positive role by feeding on pest like the soybean aphid. Mary's research is focused on the exotic multi-colored asian ladybeetle. This species is a voracious predator of soybean aphids, but is also a pest in our homes and to grape growers. Mary is documenting the role landscape plays in the establishment of this species as part of her Buckeye Lady Beetle Blitz. To learn more about Mary's work visit http://ladybeetles.osu.edu/default.asp
On a special episode of the podcast, we are visited by Dr. Donald Lewis who asks; "Will the soybean aphid outbreak bring more lady beetles". This hard-hitting question is answered, to the best of their ability by Matt and Erin.
The lady beetle in question, is the multi-colored Asian lady beetle, Harmonia axyridis. This is a beneficial insect in soybean fields but a pest in our homes.