ladybug

ladybug
/lay"dee bug'/, n.
any of numerous small, round, often brightly colored and spotted beetles of the family Coccinellidae, feeding chiefly on aphids and other small insects, but including several forms that feed on plants. Also called ladybeetle, lady beetle, ladybird beetle, ladybird.
[1690-1700; LADY + BUG1]

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Any of the approximately 5,000 widely distributed beetles of the family Coccinellidae.

The name originated in the Middle Ages, when the beetle was dedicated to the Virgin Mary and called "beetle of Our Lady." Ladybugs are hemispheric and are usually 0.3–0.4 in. (8–10 mm) long. They have short legs and are usually brightly coloured with black, yellow, or reddish markings. Several generations are produced each summer. Ladybugs are often used to control such insect pests as aphids, scales, and mites, which they eat. Several species of ladybugs feed on plants.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Ladybug — La dy*bug , n. (Zo[ o]l.) Same as {Ladybird}. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • ladybug — 1690s, from LADY (Cf. lady) + BUG (Cf. bug) (n.). The lady is the Virgin Mary (Cf. German cognate Marienkäfer). In Britain, now usually ladybird beetle (1704), through aversion to the word bug, which there has overtones of sodomy …   Etymology dictionary

  • ladybug — [lād′ēbug΄] n. [see LADYBIRD] any of a family (Coccinellidae) of small, roundish beetles with spotted backs, usually brightly colored: they feed chiefly on insect pests and their eggs …   English World dictionary

  • ladybug — UK [ˈleɪdɪˌbʌɡ] / US noun [countable] Word forms ladybug : singular ladybug plural ladybugs American a ladybird …   English dictionary

  • ladybug — Ladybird La dy*bird , n. [Equiv. to, bird of Our Lady.] (Zo[ o]l.) Any one of numerous species of small beetles of the genus {Coccinella} and allied genera (family {Coccinellid[ae]}); called also {ladybug}, {ladyclock}, {lady cow}, {lady fly},… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

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  • ladybug — noun Etymology: Our Lady, the Virgin Mary Date: 1699 any of numerous small nearly hemispherical often brightly colored often spotted beetles (family Coccinellidae) of temperate and tropical regions that usually feed both as larvae and adults on… …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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