Ladybirds are perhaps the most well-known and popular of all British beetles, and the seven-spot ladybird is one of the commonest species (2). This rounded beetle has bright red wing cases with 7 black spots, although some individuals may have more or fewer spots. The thorax is black with patches of pale yellow at the front corners (3). The common name of this group of beetles, 'ladybird', was originally given to the seven-spot in honour of the Virgin Mary; the red wing cases symbolising the Virgin's red cloak, with the seven spots representing her seven joys and seven sorrows. The larvae are blackish in colour and are active predators of aphids (4).
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