Subject: Can you help me identify this insect?
Location: Fort Worth, TX
January 31, 2013 12:54 am
This bug bit me in my own bed and I was wondering if you could help me identify it. I couldn’t get a better picture because it was 5 a.m. and I used my phone to snap the shot before it got flushed. I didn’t think to save it and/or get a better shot.
It was not all that big, maybe an inch or a little less in length. The under side and legs were green and it had brown overlapping wings. Some of my friends said it looked like a kissing bug but all the photos I found of those showed black or brown bugs and this one was green.
It originally landed on my forehead and I grabbed it. It attached to my finger and I had to, basically, scrape it off with the side of my bed. After I turned on a light I ended up accidently laying on it with my leg and it bit and/or stung my inner thigh by my knee. The bit was VERY painful and it did swell but only around the ’wound’ and the swelling went away within 2-3 hours. I still have the red make where it bit me, though. I have noticed no other effects since it happened.
Again, I apologize for the quality of the photographs. I wear contacts and had none in when the incident occurred, as well it landing on me in the dark, so I kind of freaked out and took the shots on my phone with shaking hands.
Signature: Nicole Pierce
This is an Assassin Bug in the genus Zelus. We understand the bite is quite painful, but it produces no lasting negative effects. Zelus Assassin Bugs bite folks with some degree of frequency if the letters we receive are any indication. Kissing Bugs are also Assassin Bugs, and they are one of the few groups of Assassin Bugs that do pose a threat to humans because they are known vectors for Chagas Disease.