Recently I learned about the Lost Ladybug Project, run out of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.
The scientists at Lost Ladybug are asking people all across North America to help them. They need photos of ladybugs--all ladybugs, any type of ladybugs--to help them learn important things. Like, where are they thriving? Where are they dying off? What are they feeding on?
Like the proverbial canary in the coal mine, these gem-like little insects, so beneficial to gardeners, can tell scientists a great deal about the state of our ecosystems.
This is a project that should appeal to science nerds, gardeners, and little kids of all ages (I think I may fit in all three categories).
Upload your photos of any ladybugs you see, on the Lost Ladybug website, and tell them when/where etc. you spied the little dotted beauty or beauties. Even if you go searching for ladybugs and don't find any, they want to know that, too!
I sent them a couple photos of ladybugs I found on my cat's outside water dish.
Even if the photos are a little blurry, the website urges you to send them. So, blurry or sharp, the photos help the good folks in Cornell do their important work:
Mu Shu was intrigued by what I was doing, and he stepped into the frame for a few shots. So I sent Cornell a "pug mug with bug" shot:
And then Won Ton wanted in on the action, too:
The Cornell folks sent me a thank-you back, and they said it was their first-ever Pug-and-Bug photo!