la·​dy·​bug ˈlā-dē-ˌbəg How to pronounce ladybug (audio)
: any of numerous small nearly hemispherical often brightly colored often spotted beetles (family Coccinellidae) of temperate and tropical regions that usually feed both as larvae and adults on other insects (such as aphids)

called also lady beetle, ladybird, ladybird beetle

Illustration of ladybug

Illustration of ladybug

Examples of ladybug in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The educational wooden puzzle board game comes with five double-sided puzzle cards for picture matching and large ladybug pieces sized just right for tiny hands. Samantha McIntyre, Parents, 24 Oct. 2023 For her special day, Hope dressed up as a little ladybug, while her mom wore a realistic butterfly clip in her hair. Bailey Richards, Peoplemag, 22 Oct. 2023 The designer clothing website Matches now offers a garden’s worth of veggie earthenware from the 139-year-old Portuguese ceramics manufactory Bordallo Pinheiro, including plates that look like ragwort leaves, each affixed with a high relief ladybug. Alexa Brazilian Mari Maeda and Yuji Oboshi, New York Times, 16 Oct. 2023 Fact check:Experts say Asian lady beetles can harm pets, but only in large amounts More:Study reveals how ladybugs fold their wings for flight What do ladybugs eat? Ladybugs eat aphids and other small insects. Olivia Munson, USA TODAY, 26 May 2023 Along with our native ladybugs, the Asian lady beetles feed on aphids and other soft-bodied insects that damage plants and crops. Patricia S York, Southern Living, 6 Sep. 2023 The ladybug begins life as a spiky black crawler; the garden tiger moth starts out life as an extravagantly furred caterpillar. Rivka Galchen, The New Yorker, 31 Aug. 2023 Biological control, also called biocontrol, has had many stunning victories, from ladybugs that saved the California citrus industry in the late 1800s to weevils that helped save the Florida Everglades from an onslaught of invasive trees a century later. Nala Rogers, Popular Mechanics, 9 Aug. 2023 For a really simple DIY, dress them in comfy clothing (black and red shirts), and create bee stripes with yellow tape and ladybug spots with black circles. Juliana Labianca, Good Housekeeping, 21 Aug. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'ladybug.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Our Lady, the Virgin Mary

First Known Use

1699, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of ladybug was in 1699

Dictionary Entries Near ladybug

Cite this Entry

“Ladybug.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


la·​dy·​bug -ˌbəg How to pronounce ladybug (audio)
: any of numerous small roundish-backed often brightly colored and spotted beetles that usually feed both when young and adult on other insects (as aphids)

More from Merriam-Webster on ladybug

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