Currently viewing the category: "Assassin Bugs"
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Subject: Stegosaurus?
Location: Eastern virginia, USA
November 14, 2014 8:17 pm
Found this beauty in my backyard in eastern Virginia in early November. I’ve never seen such a bug, was larger than a nickel but smaller than a quarter. What is it?
Signature: Tom

Wheel Bug

Wheel Bug

Hi Tom,
It seems like each autumn we get at least a few requests to identify a dinosaur bug or stegosaurus bug, because that is the time that Wheel Bugs like your individual attain maturity and develop the coglike thoracic feature.

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Subject: BEETLE WITH SPIKES
Location: Southern New Jersey
November 11, 2014 3:41 pm
Found this big guy out back of my office hanging out on the stucco in the sun. He moves very slow. His head seems to be the little stem that hangs far out in front of the rest of him. Just behind the head is what seems like a spiky back-pack. There’s a single line of spikes running down the middle of this ‘back-pack’. His abdomen was covered by wings. Both pictures were taken about a month apart at the same location. The one looking head-on was taken today (11/11/14).
Whats this bug?!
Thanks!
Signature: Adam

Wheel Bug

Wheel Bug

Dear Adam,
This Wheel Bug is an Assassin Bug in the family Reduviidae, not a Beetle.  The Wheel Bug is a predator, and though it is not aggressive toward humans, it might bite if carelessly handled, and we suspect the bite is painful.

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Subject: Conenose Nymph
Location: San Diego, CA
November 9, 2014 12:48 pm
Hello! Well, I am fairly certain what you see in the picture is a ConeNose Nymph that was found on my daughter’s mattress today in San Diego. Is it possible for you to approximate the age of the nymph?
Here’s a little background: My family returned to our home in San Diego from a mini-vacation in Disneyland 3 weeks ago and the morning after returning my wife found and killed a large fully grown Conenose bug filled with blood on my 4 year old daughter’s pillow. I was able to identify the bug pretty quickly by just googling blood sucking insects in Southern California (never heard of this bug before). We have subsequently killed 3 very small conenose bugs on my daughter’s mattress (all containing blood) and my daughter has at least 3 bites with swelling and redness. We called our pest control service yesterday and they came out and sprayed my daughter’s room, but we found the one pictured on her mattress this morning alive.
Out of extreme precaution, I took her fairly new mattress and box springs to the dump this morning and my daughter has been sleeping in my son’s room for the last couple nights. I’m hoping you can determine the age and possibly provide information on whether it is possible the eggs hatched in the mattress or box spring.
Seeing news stories pop-up today at the same time this is happening to us in regards to the “kissing bug” and Chagas disease has us quite concerned.
Thank you for any information you can provide!
Signature: Robert

Immature Blood Sucking Conenose Bug

Immature Blood Sucking Conenose Bug

Dear Robert,
We concur with your identification.  This appears to be a very young Blood Sucking Conenose Bug or Kissing Bug in the genus
Triatoma.  We suspect it was recently hatched.  There is only one image on BugGuide of an individual that looks similar, though most likely in a later instar or developmental stage.  Based on the information you have provided, we would speculate that this youngster is the offspring of the adult yu found several weeks ago.

Immature Kissing Bug

Immature Kissing Bug

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Subject: What is this bug?
Location: Ohio
November 3, 2014 11:14 pm
Yesterday, November 3rd on a sunny day around 54 degrees in Englewood Ohio, we saw this large flying bug crawling up the side of my parents shed. Never seen one like it before.
Signature: Scott Stewart

Wheel Bug

Wheel Bug

Hi Scott,
This is a predatory, beneficial Wheel Bug.  They mature in the autumn and they often attract attention as they are the largest Assassin Bugs in North America.

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Don’t Lose Your Head on Halloween
Subject: Wheel bugs mating
Location: Charlottesville VA
October 29, 2014 1:34 pm
Hi – my daughter found these two (very slowly) making their way across the sidewalk. I checked your site right away and was expecting to spend some time trying to narrow down what they could be. I was happy to find that this was one of the featured bugs on the front page of the website. Thank you for that! Not sure if you needed any more pictures of them mating, but here are a few my daughter took with my phone.
Signature: Hendersons

Mating Wheel Bugs

Mating Wheel Bugs

Dear Hendersons,
Your study of mating Wheel Bugs is a tangle of limbs that would make a novice bug watcher suspect a sighting of some prehistoric, mutated creature.  This is a Perfect Halloween Feature, so we are making it the Bug of the Month for November 2014 and posting it early.  We wish you had a camera angle that could distinguish actual mating with mere coupling.

Mating Wheel Bugs

Mating Wheel Bugs

That’s terrific! My daughter will be ecstatic. Here’s another picture, but I’m not sure it gives you anything more to see. We were afraid to get too close, not knowing anything about them!
Thank you so much for your response. There will be a happy kid here after school today when she hears about the Bug of the Month.
Take care and keep up the good work!
Jennifer Henderson

Hi Jennifer,
We try to keep a kid friendly site, though we do write for adults.  We like making kids happy.

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Subject: what kind of bug is this?
Location: Boonsboro Maryland
October 25, 2014 6:05 pm
I’m just wondering what kind of bug this is and if you can help that would be wonderful thank you.
Signature: Kyle Kwiatkowski

Wheel Bug

Wheel Bug

Dear Kyle,
Wheel Bugs like your individual attract attention throughout their lives, from young hatchlings, to brightly colored nymphs, to transitionary molts, to mating adults.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination