Gallery: 140,000 Ladybugs Set Loose in Manhattan Garden to Do Battle wi...

We were extremely fascinated and - we're not gonna lie - slightly disgusted as M'Finda Kalunga Community Garden's Bud Shalala held up a leafy tree branch so that we could see the clustered, wart-like aphid pods that have been plaguing a tree in the Lower East Side garden. The pests had long been eating up the garden's roses and laying their larvae in various plants, but now it seems that there's a new sheriff in town - 140,000 ladybugs! The polka-dotted red critters were donated to the garden by the Department of Entomology at Cornell University and released last Sunday to serve as a natural, pesticide-free way to keep the hungry aphids at bay. We were intrigued to hear all about how the new ladybugs are helping the green space and we even got a few of them to participate in a photo shoot, so click through our gallery to feast your eyes on these photogenic creatures as well as the not-so-photogenic aphid agglomerations.

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