I was hoping for some butterflies this week, but it’s been raining most of the time and I’ve only seen a few; perhaps we’ll get Summer sometime. Meanwhile, I’ve found a wide variety of ladybirds, most of which I’d never seen before (info from UK Ladybird Survey)
Ask a child to draw a ladybird, and you’ll probably get something like this: up to 8mm long (as big as a Harlequin), found just about everywhere, eats aphids: the 7-spot. My favourite.
Here are some of the many variations of the 10-spot: half the size of the 7-spot, and seems to have any number of spots except 10. Lives mostly in trees and hedgerows, eats aphids.
This should be called the red-nosed ladybird; it’s a Cream-spot – lives in trees and hedges, and eats (you guessed it) aphids.
This one – the 14-spot – can be found just about anywhere (they say – I had never seen one before). Another aphid-eater
And here’s one I found last year: the tiny 22-spot. Lives in low vegetation and, unlike the others, eats mildew.