Ladybug, ladybug…backyard bliss for bug-loving kids

gimme-some-more-ladybugs-1This was a sweet summer evening activity we did in our backyard: releasing live lady bugs.

Yes, this what you have to do in city lacking fireflies. Import your own friendly insects. And ladybugs have almost as friendly a rep as fireflies. My toddler son loved feeling the ladybugs tickle up his arm. Releasing them onto the stems of flowers proved to be a bit more challenging. They didn’t want to leave us.

upclose-ladybugs-1You can order the live ladybugs here. They are apparently a more healthy alternative to chemical bug spray. You release them at sundown (because they don’t fly at night) and they eat aphids and other bugs. Gnats? We’ll see. We’re also hoping they’ll lay eggs and we’ll see baby lady bugs in a few weeks.

Babble also has suggestions for 25 Nature Adventures for Kids, including things you can do in your backyard. I love the birdwatching tip to encourage kids to take part in the annual Great Backyard Bird Count through the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society.

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