The Adirondack Carousel
As the New York State insect, each animal and Chariot of the Adirondack Carousel you can find carved ladybugs which provide an opportunity for young children to “search” for the bugs before they ride and when they are attending a birthday party. Through the Lost Lady Bug Project, they will be teaching children the importance of this science research project, how to make a catch net, how to catch and photograph lady bugs around their home, school and surrounding area. All of the findings will be added to the research being done at Cornell. Every ladybug caught, rare or common, native or exotic, is important. The project will continue for years, and collections from the same location over the years will be especially useful to this research.
Historically there is a good ladybug story that forms the basis of this national Lost Ladybug Project Research. Three native species of ladybugs, Two Spotted, Nine Spotted and Transverse were once common in New York as recently at 1985. Now, almost thirty years later, two of the species are quite rare in New York and the third may be extinct. All three native species occurred in the Adirondack Region and farther north in 1985 but none have been found in recent times. The scientists don’t have much information on the elevations these species occurred at in New York, but in Colorado where they still thrive, they are found at 6,000 to 8,000 ft. There are still many species of ladybugs in the Adirondacks; however the most common is the introduced Asian ladybug. The best survey the Lost Ladybug Project has of ladybugs in Northern New York was done in 2009 by student collaborators from the Akwesasne Freedom School in the Akwesasne Mohawk Nation near Hogansburg. From 2008-2013 the Lost Ladybug Project has records of about eight ladybug species centered in or close to the Adirondack Park, but very little information has been collected in our area. These beneficial predators of farm and garden pests have become extremely rare and their rapid decline is of great concern. If we can help determine where the native ladybugs still live, we may learn why this decline has happened and be able to do something to stop it.
The project will kick off in the spring of 2014 right before the ladybugs come out. If you would be interested in joining us and working on this project, contact Marge Glowa at email@example.com or call the Carousel at 891-9521 for more information.