Harlequin ladybird established in the wild in Ireland

News in brief

Harlequin ladybird larvae and pupae (with adults) have been recorded from two locations in Ireland. Both sightings have been been confirmed by Dr. Roy Anderson (Ladybirds of Ireland). “The establishment of wild populations of harlequin in Ireland is therefore confirmed” Dr. Anderson.

harlequin ladybird larva. Photo:Brian Power

The first report was made by Mr. Brian Power on 15/07/2011 near Kildavin Co. Carlow. The larva was crawling on a pear tree in a garden. This species is confirmed as Harmonia axyridis var. succinea.

The second report was made by Mr. John O’ Sullivan but for an earlier date of 19/10/2010 near Center Park Road, Cork City.  Larva and many pupae were photographed on Griselinia bushes.

Mr. O’ Sullivan saw many harlequin larva in the same area on the same bushes this year (21/10/2011).  The species is confirmed as Harmonia axyridis var. succinea.


Harlequin ladybird pupa. Photo: John O' Sullivan



Harlequin ladybird pupa. Photo: John O' Sullivan

To date, there have been 10 confirmed reports of harlequin ladybird sightings in Ireland with the following varieties being recorded:

  • succinea
  • spectabilis
  • conspicua

Please report any suspected sightings you may have of this invasive harlequin ladybird. Note where and when you saw them and please provide an photograph or retain a specimen pending verification of identification.

See Species Alert page