The Harlequin Ladybird Survey
Harlequin ladybird elytra
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Dr Helen Roy


Research Ecologist


Biological Records Centre, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology

Ladybird research keywords

Ecology, behaviour, biological recording, intraguild interactions, non-native species, natural enemies, enemy release hypothesis, entomopathogens, Coccinella septempunctata, Harmonia axyridis, Beauveria bassiana.

Description of work

My ladybird research focuses on the ecology and behaviour of ladybirds. My current research interests include:

  1. Recording the ladybirds ( and across the British Isles and linking their distribution to environmental change
  2. Ecological attributes and traits of non-native invertebrate species including ladybirds
  3. Studying the interactions between the invasive alien harlequin ladybird, Harmonia axyridis and other aphidophages particularly insect pathogenic (entomopathogenic) fungi.
  4. Ecological modelling to assess the impacts of harlequin ladybirds on native ladybirds and aphids in relation to climate change, intraguild predation and direct competition.
Key publications

Roy, H.E., Hails, R.S., Hesketh, H., Roy, D.B. & Pell, J.K. (2009) Beyond biological control: non-pest insects and their pathogens in a changing world. Insect Conservation and Biodiversity, 2: 65-72.

Roy, H.E.& Cottrell, T. (2008) Forgotten natural enemies: interactions between coccinellids and insect-parasitic fungi. European Journal of Entomology, 105: 391-398.

Roy, H.E., Brown, P.M.J., Rothery, P., Ware, R.L. & Majerus, M.E.N. (2008) Interactions between the fungal pathogen Beauveria bassiana and three species of ladybird: Harmonia axyridis, Coccinella septempunctata and Adalia bipunctata. BioControl, 53: 265-276.

Roy, H.E., Baverstock, J., Ware, R.L., Clark, S.J., Majerus, M.E.N., Baverstock, K.E. & Pell, J.K. (2008). Intraguild predation of the aphid pathogenic fungus Pandora neoaphidis by the invasive coccinellid Harmonia axyridis. Ecological Entomology, 33: 1-8.

Majerus, M.E.N., Strawson, V. & Roy, H.E. (2006) The potential impacts of the arrival of the Harlequin ladybird, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), in Britain. Ecological Entomology, 31: 207-215.

7-spot ladybird

Helen's favourite ladybird is the 7-spot ladybird