Unusual bug… Need help!
Location: Orange, CA
December 8, 2011 6:02 pm
My daughter and I were on a walk recently and came across this bug. I have never seen anything like it before. It was beatiful and strange and we spent about 10 minutes watching it. I am adventurous and tried to pick it up but it refused to climb on my hand and then tried unsuccessfully to fly. Daughter was afraid it had a stinger. We are very interested in solving this mystery! Thanks!!
This is one of the Leaf Footed Bugs in the genus Leptoglossus, and many species are difficult for us to distinguish from one another in a photograph. There are several species found in California. We believe you have submitted a photograph of Leptoglossus clypealis. According to BugGuide: “Can be a pest in pistacio and almond orchards because it feeds on the nuts.” BugGuide notes the distinguishing features as: “A spine extending forwards from the tip of the nose (technically known as the tylus) distinguishes this species” and “Leaf-like protrusions on the hind legs have very shallow scallops. Broad zig-zagging white stripe across wings.” Upon enlarging your image, we believe we can make out the tylus.