Currently viewing the category: "Ambush Bugs"
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Subject: bug
Location: Portland Tn.
August 18, 2014 6:50 pm
Would like to know what this bug is and any other info. on it.
Signature: Carol

Jagged Ambush Bug Nymph

Jagged Ambush Bug Nymph

Dear Carol,
This is an immature Jagged Ambush Bug, and like the winged adult Jagged Ambush Bugs, they are adept hunters that ambush prey, generally by waiting on flowers for pollinating insects.  Ambush Bugs ambush prey, grasping them with their raptorial front legs and then using their piercing mouthparts to suck fluids from the bodies of the insects they capture.   See BugGuide for a comparison image.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Identification please.
Location: Michigan, USA
August 18, 2014 6:43 pm
Hi Bugman,
Discovered two of these insects on my Butterfly Bush today, August 18th. One very black and spiny looking, the other displayed more detail and color. They are 8-10mm in length. I find the mantis-like front legs of special interest. They showed little concern for my inspection of them. Thanks for your help!
Signature: Sheree Cooke

Ambush Bug

Jagged Ambush Bug

Hi Sheree,
This is a predatory Jagged Ambush Bug in the genus Phymata, and they frequently await on blossoms for prey to arrive, which means many of their victims are beneficial, pollinating insects.  Do not be fooled by the small size of this stealth predator, as a tiny Ambush Bug is capable of subduing much larger prey, including Honey Bees.  See BugGuide for a comparable image.

Jagged Ambush Bug

Jagged Ambush Bug

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Insect with lime green diamond
Location: Houston Texas
June 6, 2014 6:50 pm
Sorry I just email you about this bug cause I thought my mom found it but it was found in Houston Texas, Not Western Nebraska.
Signature: Wick

Ambush Bug

Ambush Bug

Hi Wick
While we were pretty certain that this is an Ambush Bug, we had not seen any examples in the past with this distinctive marking.  When we searched BugGuide, we learned that Ambush Bugs in the genus
Macrocephalus are characterized by this particular pattern.  While we have no shortage of Ambush Bug images on our site, we believe this is the first documentation we have of the genus Macrocephalus, at least that we have identified to that level.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unknown bug in DC
Location: Washington, DC
March 8, 2014 8:54 am
Hi Bugman,
Can you help me with this bug? I found it last summer, in July, in my backyard, in NW DC. It was on my grill. It is really small and looks buggish but seems to have front legs that look like a mantis. Thank you so much for this site and your help.
Stephanie
Signature: Stephanie H.

Immature Ambush Bug

Immature Ambush Bug

Dear Stephanie,
This is an immature Ambush Bug, and it does use its raptorial front legs to capture prey much the same way that a Preying Mantis captures its prey.   Ambush Bugs were once classified in their own family, but new taxonomy has them identified as a subfamily of the Assassin Bugs.

Ambush Bugs

Ambush Bug Nymph

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Dino-Sloth-Bug?
Location: Richmond, Virginia
July 28, 2013 5:20 pm
I noticed this bug about two weeks ago–possibly longer. I first took its picture with my phone a week ago today because the bug in question was so distinctive looking, kind of (in my eyes) like a miniature dinosaur–or at least, perhaps, a dinosaur-looking monster from a low budget 1950s sci-fi movie.
I took its picture again today–this time with a real camera–because, like some kind of sloth bug, it hasn’t moved from the same flower for over two weeks. That seems unusual to me.
In the first picture, note the white cocoon-like thing next to the bug.
Thanks for your help.
[This is a second submission; earlier today, the first submission, with larger image files, bogged down. If the first try actually went through and this is a repeat, I apologize for the unintended re-submission.]
Signature: E.W.

Ambush Bug

Ambush Bug

Dear E.W.,
This effective predator is an Ambush Bug in the Assassin Bug subfamily Phymatinae.  It looks like this Jagged Ambush Bug in the genus
Phymata that is posted on BugGuide.  Ambush Bugs often wait on blossoms to ambush their prey.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mystery Love Bugs
Location: Andover, NJ
June 5, 2013 10:59 am
Hoping you can identify these two happy little insects for me. I photographed them this morning on a wild daisy in Andover (northern) NJ. The daisy was about 1 1/2 inches across, which gives you an idea how tiny these little insects were – I couldn’t really make them out well with the naked eye. The daisy was trail-side near a lake.
Hope you can figure it out!
Signature: Deborah Bifulco

Mating Ambush Bugs

Mating Ambush Bugs

Hi Deborah,
We apologize for the delay.  We were on holiday and we are now trying to make a small dent in the 100s of identification requests that arrived during our absence from the office.  These are mating Ambush Bugs.  Ambush Bugs were once classified in their own family, but recent taxonomy has downgraded them to a subfamily, Phymatinae, of the Assassin Bugs.  Ambush Bugs frequently stalk their prey on the blossoms of flowers.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination