Can Ladybugs Eat Grapes

Can Ladybugs Eat Grapes

Ladybugs can get STDs, but not the same kind as humans. Humans are safe holding and feeding these adorable beetles, but they could be harboring an unpleasant surprise called Laboulbeniales fungal disease for their mates.

Even more alarmingly, ladybugs mate in large piles called aggregations, so it spreads fast. Plus, other insects can get Laboulbeniales. Can Ladybugs eat grapes?

Ladybugs can eat grapes, but raisins soaked in water are a better option. These unique beetles typically eat small soft-bodied insects like aphids, leaves, or fungi, but they also enjoy sugar in fruits like grapes and apples or from honey. Ladybugs typically stay away from fruits with high acid content like pineapples and lemons.

Do Ladybugs Eat Grapes

Ladybugs mostly eat fruit flies, mites, and aphids, but they enjoy fruit nectar, and they can eat grapes. In fact, soft, high moisture content fruits are the best option for these small, colorful beetles.

The only fruits they seem to avoid eating are those high in citric acid. Presumably, they can’t digest much acid.

According to, citrus, in particular, is prone to “…armored and soft scale insects, mites, whiteflies, leafminers, mealybugs, and aphids. The most problematic pests for containerized citrus grown indoors over the winter are spider mites and mealybugs.”

Like vineyard owners, citrus growers can significantly benefit from having more ladybugs around. However, the most significant difference is that the ladybugs won’t eat any of the citrus fruits, even if you peel them.

Having ladybugs in backyard grapevines or vineyards can be significantly beneficial to your grapes by preventing insect infestations.

However, when it comes time to juice the grapes, make sure you wash them well. The minor amount these cute bugs eat isn’t a problem, but winemakers believe that ladybugs in the wine will produce an inferior product.

Fermented ladybugs don’t help the process. Even if you’re making grape juice, you should avoid beetle-juice.

How Do Ladybugs Eat Grapes

Ladybugs eat grapes with their mandibles, which are like large teeth outside the mouth or pincers. These mandibles grasp, pinch, squeeze, grind and move food from outside to in the mouth.

In the case of aphids, they are small and soft enough to break apart easily and fit in the beetle’s mouth.

Grape skin is thin, though it varies by species and is affected by the growing conditions. Regardless, the width is narrow enough for a ladybug to get through.

However, when grapes become raisins, they are even sweeter and more accessible to break open.

If you choose to raise ladybugs, many experts suggest soaking raisins for a few minutes before feeding them to the ladybugs. This helps them break the skin and adds moisture.

While ladybugs can drink water, they typically seek it out only when they need it. Most of the time, a ladybug’s primary water source comes from their food.

Aphids and soft-bodied insects are surprisingly moist, especially when you are only a few millimeters long and don’t need much water to survive.

How Often Will Ladybugs Eat Grapes

A ladybug will snack on aphids all day in nature, rarely taking a break to move to a new source, but they will stop for some nectar or a sweet treat.

Given the option, ladybugs will eat a treat like grapes as often as once or twice per day.

Feeding home-raised ladybugs usually involves offering them raisins, grapes, or other fruits along with lettuce until you’re ready and able to let them out in the garden.

Unfortunately, ladybugs can’t live on just grapes, but they will happily eat them daily if the opportunity presents itself.

Like most creatures that eat sugar, it’s not necessary to survive, but it tastes good and offers quick and easy energy in a pinch.

There are no essential nutrients in grapes that ladybugs need, but they have lots of water, and it won’t damage the beetles to have them.

Will Grapes Harm Ladybugs

Grapes will not harm ladybugs. Plus, these insects are surprisingly clever eaters who have good self-control. Not only will they refuse to overeat, but they don’t overpopulate in limited areas.

About the only way, a grape would hurt one of these surprisingly durable beetles is if they’re coated in something toxic. It’s best to wash any food before you offer it to the ladybugs.

Helpful Tips To Know If Ladybugs Can Eat Grapes

Ladybugs are versatile and moderately opportunistic eaters who can have their primary food source and sugary treats. Some ladybugs have even had candies like chocolates, though it’s not usually recommended.

Here are more helpful tips to know if ladybugs can eat grapes.

  • Ladybugs can live in virtually any climate on earth, and they hibernate over the winter when it’s too cold to find food, eating nothing. Moreover, some species can go as long as nine months without eating. Soon after, the spring thaw is the best time of year for these essential tiny beetles to get an extra boost from some sugary food like grapes.
  • A single ladybug will eat up to fifty aphids per day. A mature aphid can lay three to six eggs per day, having an insectivore like the ladybug around. If you don’t want to purchase ladybugs and raise them, you can lure them in sweets like grapes are nice, but according to Apartment Therapy, “ladybugs also look for pollen for a food source, so there are numerous plants you can grow to help attract them. Flowers and herbs such as cilantro, dill, fennel, caraway, yarrow, tansy, angelica, scented geraniums, coreopsis, and cosmos are good choices for luring the ladybug.”
  • It is essential to wash any fruits you offer to your ladybugs before you feed them. Most commercial fruit growers use some form of pesticide to kill insects on their fruit. Sadly, this can be lethal for ladybugs. A better choice is raisins soaked in water or organic, pesticide-free grapes. The best possible option is growing the grapes yourself, but not everyone has a green thumb or the space to grow their own food.
  • The two most preferred species of ladybugs for home gardens are Hippodamia Convergens and the Asian ladybug, Harmonia Axyridis. The Hippodamia Convergens eat more aphids and are less picky about the climate, but either option is excellent, and they will both happily eat a few grapes or raisins.

Final Thoughts

If you grow grapes, there’s no genuine concern that ladybugs will eat them all. They won’t even do significant damage.

Like humans, ladybugs enjoy sugar and get an energy boost from it. However, these adorable small beetles are excellent self-regulators where diet is concerned, and they won’t overeat.

There are no obese ladybugs. Moreover, feeding a tank of ladybugs lettuce and raisins or grapes will only be okay for a short while.

The beetles still need access to their usual food source eventually because they need the protein to stay healthy. Even vegetarian ladybugs usually dine on leaves and not fruit.

Still, a few pieces of grape can be a nice temporary treat for your ladybugs before you release them in the garden.

Ted Smith

My name is Ted Smith and I’m the creator of I have a passion for educating people about animals and wildlife. I have been working with the National Wildlife Federation for the past 10 years and I became a wildlife blogger to help people become excited about animals and encouraged to care for these wonderful creatures.

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