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I noticed a red ladybug on my floor lamp paper shade in my room a few days ago. My room is indoors. Ladybugs are supposed to be outdoors (see the below photo for an example). I tried to remedy the ladybug’s situation by gently picking it up with a paper towel and taking it outside. I managed to get the ladybug to walk onto the paper towel. However, the ladybug reminded me of one of its special abilities before I could safely return it to its natural habitat – it flew away.

A ladybug on a birdbath in San Antonio, Texas, in 2016 - photographed by Nicholas A. Ferrell.
I took this photograph of a ladybug on a birdbath in Texas in 2016 with my Nikon D40 DLSR camera. This ladybug, unlike the ladybug in my room, did not need to be rescued.

I did not see the ladybug again that evening. The next day, I kept my eye out for the very small insect in my room. I spotted it late that afternoon on one of my windows that does not open. I went to retrieve a small glass and an envelope to secure our six-legged friend. Unfortunately, when I returned with both, the ladybug was nowhere to be found.

I figured that I was running out of time to save the ladybug. While my home contains no threats to ladybug life that I am aware of, it does have a distinct lack of ladybug food. Later that day (or the next), around midnight, I was playing Fire Emblem Three Houses on my television. In the midst of a battle against bandits, I noticed something walking on my TV screen.

It was the ladybug.

To my (and the ladybug’s) good fortune, I had kept the small glass that I used in an unsuccessful rescue operation about 8 hours earlier in my room. Furthermore, I also had an envelope. My TV screen – like all TV screens these days – has a bit of give. For that reason, I was gentle in placing the glass over the ladybug.

On my first attempt, I covered the ladybug with the small cup with no issue. However, when I tried to slide the envelope between the glass and my TV screen (gently, as to not hurt the ladybug), I have the ladybug too much room to sneak out from under the glass. However, unlike my failed attempt to secure the bug on my floor lamp the day before, the ladybug did not fly away. This allowed me a second opportunity – and on that occasion, I was able to contain the ladybug in the glass covered by the envelope.

Now having the ladybug in the glass, I took it to my Juliet balcony placing the glass on the outdoor balcony and removing the envelope. It seemed that the ladybug did not want to leave. Since it was late and there was a chance that the ladybug would undo all of my hard work by flying back inside if I left the French doors to the balcony ajar, I closed the door and left the glass on the balcony while I finished my Fire Emblem affairs for the evening/morning before going to bed.

The ladybug was no longer there the next morning. I assume it flew away to greener pastures – somewhere more amenable to ladybug life than an indoor bedroom. It joined a grasshopper, three bees, and another ladybug as my most unusual visitors of 2021. Those insects too were saved – and I may tell some of their stories in the future.

Are my bug rescues heroic? They are at least as heroic as my rescuing a fallen trash can.

Fare thee well, fair ladybug.