Natural Enemies Quick List
||How They Help
||Lady Beetles (aka Ladybugs)||Larvae eat soft-bodied pests, scales, spider mites, mealybugs, thrips, and whiteflies.||Adults have a similar diet, but also need pollen and nectar in their diet.|
Ground beetles feed on caterpillars, slugs, snails, and grasshopper eggs.
Blister beetles feed on grasshopper eggs, soft-bodied insects, and grubs.
Rove beetles can eat root maggot young, mites, and other small insects.
|Their preferred habitat can vary. Many ground beetles are attracted to low growing plants that provide some cover from their enemies.|
|Predatory Mites||Predatory mites feed on pest mites, scales, thrips, and insect eggs.|
|Spiders||Spiders feed on a wide range of insects and mites.||Some types stalk and hunt insects, while others weave webs and wait for insects to become trapped.|
||Parasitic Wasps||Adults lay their eggs in the body or eggs of pests like caterpillars, aphids, beetle larvae, and sawflies. As the larvae grow, they feed on and kill the pest.||Adults actually feed on nectar from flowering plants.|
|Tachinid Flies||Adults lay their eggs near, on, or inside of pests like caterpillars, grasshoppers, some beetles, and sawfly larvae. The larvae feed on and kill the pest.|
|Rove Beetles||A few types of rove beetles have larvae that seek out and eat the larvae of root maggots.|
||Bees||Adults collect and carry pollen to and from flowering plants as they search for food to take back to their young.
||Bees need a steady source of pollen, nectar, and water throughout most of the year.
||Adults eat only pollen and nectar. As they visit flowers in search of food, the help with pollination.
||Larvae will actually search for and eat soft-bodied insects.
|The Non-insect Natural Enemies
||Birds, Bats, Toads, and Turtles
||These animals can all feed on insects. Some of the pests they eat include snails, slugs, and grubs.
||These guys break down soil by feeding on decaying plant matter, fungi, and algae.
||Springtails, earthworms, and other invertebrates might look like insects, but they aren't.
|Pathogens||Some types of fungi, bacteria, nematodes, and viruses can play a role in keeping pest numbers down.