Swarm of ladybugs is so large it registers on National Weather service radar in California
Out of the insect kingdom, ladybugs are often seen as the cutest and most adorable of them all. But when it comes down to it, they're still bugs. Being someone who had an infestation of them in my house once, I can attest to them not being quite as cute as everyone makes them out to be.
Just look at these lil weirdos:
Recently, San Diego County has become home to a lot of these creatures, as a swarm passed through the county on Tuesday night. In fact, the swarm was so large that it registered on the National Weather Service's weather radar that evening, according to CBS Los Angeles.
"The large echo showing up on SoCal radar this evening is not precipitation, but actually a cloud of ladybugs termed a 'bloom,'" NWS San Diego wrote on Twitter, alongside a GIF that displayed the swarm appearing on their radar.
Speaking to local radio station KNX-AM, Meteorologist Miguel Miller explained that the swarm - which covers over 80 miles 0 is heading towards the county from the San Gabriel Mountains.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the ladybug bloom may cover 80 miles, but isn't a concentrated mass that size. The insects are spread throughout the sky, with the most concentrated mass within the swarm covering around 10 miles.
Joe Dandrea, a meteorologist with NWS San Diego, spoke with someone who had seen the swarm in the San Bernadino Mountains. "I don’t think they’re dense like a cloud," Dandrea said. "The observer there said you could see little specks flying by."
According to the University of California Integrated Pest Management Program, the state is home to around 200 species of ladybugs, including the convergent lady beetle.
This particular species converge to mate and migrate from the Sierra Nevada to valley areas to feed and lay eggs, once temperatures reach 65 degrees in early Spring. In the early summer, the number of aphids (on which the ladybugs feed) decline, leading these same insects to migrate to higher elevations.
So far it is unclear what species of ladybugs are involved in the phenomenon spotted in San Diego County.