An Asian lady beetle, Harmonia axyridis
, bejewels a leaf as the sun shines through from the other side. Shot in Maryland, this is an invasive species throughout much of the US and Europe. I also have a selective color version here: www.flickr.com/photos/furryscalyman/447757842/
This pest species has many names. For starters, lady beetles already can be known as ladybirds, ladybird beetles, or ladybugs. Take those endings and throw any of the following in front of it, and that gives you a lot of name variations: Asian, Japanese, harlequin, multicolored, multicoloured, southern, Halloween, pumpkin, eighteen-spotted, and 18-spotted. The beetles are native to eastern Asia, hence the name "Asian" and "Japanese". They come in many colors of red and orange, with variations on pattern and shade, hence the names "multicolored", "multicoloured", and "harlequin". In the United States they are primarily found in the southern states, hence "southern", though they are found in the east and west as well. The names "Halloween" and "pumpkin" stem from their habit to enter homes in the US in and around October, in order to hibernate for the winter. And lastly, they typically have eighteen spots on their "backs", which is where the "eighteen-spotted" or "18-spotted" names come from. The official name is "Asian lady beetle" or "Asian ladybird beetle". This species can be easily identified by the "M" on the pronotum (the white part behind the head).