The Friendly Bug

I hope you enjoy this photo of a friendly cartoon creature, which I came across one day painted on a shed door. It reminded me a bit of a ladybird, only the spots are the wrong colour, and it only has four legs instead of six.
Real ladybirds (or ‘ladybugs’ in America) are really small flying beetles, mostly red or orange, with black spots on their wing covers. They are popular with gardeners because they eat up aphids. In German they are ‘Marienkafer’, which reminds us that the ‘lady’ part of the name is after the Virgin Mary, whom farmers prayed to for help when their crops were threatened by pests.
The one in the picture looks too friendly to eat anything!
     
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