Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
January 26, 2011 7:24 pm
Just the other day my roommates and I were in the living room when we noticed a dark spot up my our fireplace. When I climbed up to investigate, I noticed it wasn’t just one bug but a whole bunch of small ones hatching. The area there were in was roughly the size of a adult female palm. They were found in January in Oklahoma. They were about a foot from the celing on the brick around our fireplace in the living room. We caught one in a peice of tape and took it to the home depot and though they couldn’t id the type, they gave us some Raid which killed them. We had a huge problem with black widows in the fall and I’m worried they might be babies that are just hatching. Any ideas? Do we need to have someone come spray for them?
This is a cluster of Wheel Bug hatchlings, a beneficial predator. It is odd that the egg cluster was laid indoors, but the fact that they were found near a fireplace brings up a possibility. Perhaps a female Wheel Bug was prowling through the wood pile outdoors looking for a Black Widow Spider to prey upon when the log was taken indoors. Adult Wheel Bugs are dark gray and they would blend in with the color of the log. Left with no other alternatives, the Wheel Bug laid her eggs on the ceiling of the living room. Because of the heat indoors, the eggs hatched early. Hatchling Wheel Bugs do look somewhat spiderlike and they do have red and black coloration like Black Widows, so your mistake is understandable. Hatching indoors did not leave them very good odds of survival even without the insecticide, but we are going to tag this posting as Unnecessary Carnage nonetheless because as we stated originally, Wheel Bugs are beneficial predators.
A reader Comments:
RE: hatchling wheel bugs
January 27, 2011 10:07 am
I am writing to you today to convey a message to your readership. I was very dismayed to see all of the wheel bug hatchlings that met a very early demise. This was a very unfortunate event with these awesome wheel bugs, and even though in your response you say Amanda’s mistaking them for Black Widow babies is understandable because of the similar colors and them being ”spiderlike”, I noticed clearly in Amanda’s picture that the bugs have antenna. So that is my message for your readers: if you see something that has antenna, it’s not a spider, as spiders don’t have antenna. Sincerely, Amy
Thank you for the response and I inderstand the Unnecessary Carnage tagging though I think you understand my fear they were baby black widows. I would like to point out as well that our fire place is gas and has been sealed up by the homeowners as they do not want renters “setting the house on fire” 🙂 We assumed they climbed in through the fireplace. The next time we find them we will be sure to relocated them back outside where they belong (which I do with most of the insects that find their way in my house with the exception of the black widow.) Can you answer a question of whether or not they bite? I have read several things online that differ. Thank you!
Hi again Amanda,
Wheel Bugs can bite, but they do not typically bite humans. Careless handling might result in a bite. Certain other Assassin Bugs are more prone to biting, and some species, like Kissing Bugs actually feed on warm blooded hosts, including humans.