I found this elongated spotted beetle crawling deep through the moss in the middle of April, so probably one of the earlier ones. We found a key online, http://www.discoverlife.org/20/q?guide=Ladybug that was pretty easy to use and (hopefully) accurate. Lady beetles have a larval stage where they look like a teeny tiny spiky alligators. Both the adults and the larvae are voracious feeders --particularly on aphids. The scientific name of the 13 spot is a mouthful, Hippodamia tredecimpunctata.
Two biologists on a beautiful property armed with cameras, smart phones and a marginal knowledge of websites took up the challenge of documenting one species a day on that property. Join along! Posts and photographs by Leah Ramsay and David Fraser (unless otherwise stated; started January 1, 2014.