Why do ladybugs have spots?
Have you ever thought that a beautiful red lady-bug with its big black spots looked like it must have just run through a bunch of confetti? Why the spots??
Like lots of other animals, ladybugs need a way to protect themselves.
Some animals come equipped with good tools for escape (like strong legs for running for powerful fins for swimming). Other animals have defense strategies like stingers or sharp teeth or spiky quills, while still others rely on their ability to hide or camouflage.
When it comes to ladybugs, most entomologists (bug scientists) think the spots are their special form of protection! In nature, lots of things with bright colors signal "yucky" or even "poison" to a hungry predator.
The colorful and recognizable spotted look of a ladybug is probably a sign to other animals that the ladybug won't taste good and might even be poisonous. Although you and I might think the spots make ladybugs look pretty, it makes other creatures think they should look somewhere else for their snack!
What are some other bugs or animals that also have spots? There are cheetahs, leopards, and certain butterflies, just to name a few!
Can you think of any plants that have spots? Just like ladybugs, some plants might have spots to warn you not to eat them!Draw a picture of what the world would look like if more things were spotted. Think about a polka-dotted sky, polka-dotted trees, and even things like a polka-dotted school or a polka-dotted car! NEAT!!
Not all ladybugs actually have spots! Some are plain colors like red, orange, or black. Have you ever seen a non-spotted ladybug??