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I have a tomato plant in a large planter. I spotted several yellow lady bugs on the leaves as I was pruning the plant. The plant seems to be doing very well in the fall so far.

I was a bit curious as to what they were. I've never seen yellow ladybugs. I also don't know much about insects. I did notice some of the leaves had holes in them. I presume that's from insects eating on my plant.

I did a quick google search which indicates that they might possibly be beneficial for tomato plants. I wanted to confirm this. Are yellow ladybugs helpful for tomato plants? Are they any different from regular red ladybugs?

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I think ladybugs are what we call ladybirds - there have always been yellow ones with black spots, sometimes black with yellow spots, and the more usual red ladybirds. They are classified often by the number of spots they have on their backs, but they all do the same job - eat aphids, which is good for your tomatoes and any other plants.

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    ladybugs (ladybird beetles) are beneficial. their larvae and adults eat smaller (generally plant sucking) arthropods. – Grady Player Nov 8 '12 at 18:36
  • Yellow ones are generally Asian Ladybeetles, I think. Not beneficial, and they actually do bite (not anything horrible, but annoying, to be sure). thespruce.com/good-and-bad-ladybugs-2656236 – PoloHoleSet Mar 29 '17 at 16:30
  • @PoloHoleSet - not exactly right. So called 'Asian ladybugs' are all Harmonia axyridis, which comes in a wide range of colours with the exception of bright yellow. The 22 spot Ladybird (or ladybug) is of the genus Psyllobara and is bright yellow. All only bite when they're really hungry, when they'll bite anything they land on to see if its edible... – Bamboo Mar 29 '17 at 17:48
  • Ah, bright yellow. I was thinking they were talking about the pale brownish-yellow that we see so often where I live. – PoloHoleSet Mar 29 '17 at 18:27
  • @PoloHoleSet - yea, the more beige coloured ones are actually Harmonia – Bamboo Mar 29 '17 at 19:24
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I've read about Asian ladybugs being a grape pest (though they don't damage the plants or fruit; they just get mixed up into the juice, sometimes, and change the taste), and they're said to bite (I'm guessing they'd have to be provoked, normally), and live in your house in the winter, but I haven't heard about any issues with tomatoes.

Asian ladybugs are known as multicolored ladybugs, and they can be yellow (they aren't always, though). I'm not sure if there are yellow ladybugs that aren't pests for some kind of crop, but perhaps.

Asian ladybugs should eat aphids regularly, like other ladybugs.

Also, I've heard about ladybugs that are foliar bean pests (Mexican Bean Beetle) and foliar cucurbit pests (Squash Lady Beetle). Again, I doubt they would be a pest to tomatoes. The latter is also said to feed on bean and pea foliage. the Squash Lady Beetle does look yellowish (and the article said they have 14 spots). I imagine they're not a pest to your tomatoes, especially if you don't have foliar damage. It appears that the Mexican Bean Beetle (16 spots) can be yellow, too.

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