Currently viewing the category: "Assassin Bugs"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Extinct bug ?
Location: ColumbusIN
March 16, 2017 11:04 pm
I think i have found a very rare or uncommon bug it was on a flower pot and really freaked me out. I would really apriciate your thoughts thank you.
Signature: Hand?

Wheel Bug Nymph

Dear Hand?,
This Wheel Bug nymph is neither rare nor extinct.  What is unusual is the early sighting during the winter in your northern location.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What on earth is this bug?
Location: On my mango tree in the yard…
March 10, 2017 8:09 am
Hello Bugman,
I live in Antigua, the Caribbean. I usually spot these red and black bugs in huge amounts on the beach, but now, they are on all over my mango tree!!! Should I light my tree on fire?!??! Are they harmful? What on earth are these?
Signature: Mel

Milkweed Assassin Bug

Dear Mel,
This is a beneficial Assassin Bug that will help eliminate pests from your mango tree.  We believe this is a Milkweed Assassin Bug,
Zelus longipes, a North American species with a range that includes “so. US (so. Atlantic & Gulf states to so. CA) to Argentina” according to BugGuide.  Assassin Bugs might bite if carelessly handled.

Milkweed Assassin Bug

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Tiny praying mantis?
Location: Gilroy, CA, Watsonville Road near Uvas Creek: 37.02912ºN, -121.65475ºW
March 1, 2017 2:07 am
My grandson and I found this tiny bug dragging a moth across the screen of my tent. Although it looked like a praying mantis, it was so tiny that I wondered if it really was one. Could it be an instar? I I remember instars from Entomology at Cal Poly, but I couldn’t tell if it had wings. I released it after the photo shoot, but, alas, the moth was dead.
My grandson and I caught it October 3, 2010 around 5 pm and I have always wondered about it. I just ran across the pictures about the same time I received notification that there was a new comment about the Pacific Green Sphinx I submitted 1/17/2015, which reminded me to get in gear and find out about my tiny friend.
Signature: Bob

Thread Legged Bug eats Moth

Dear Bob,
This is actually an Assassin Bug in the subfamily Emesinae, a group known as Thread Legged Bugs.  The moth appears to be a Geometer.  We are happy to hear the notice you received on the Pacific Green Sphinx triggered this new submission.

Thread Legged Bug

Hi Daniel,
Thanks for your super fast reply.  Wow!  An Assassin Bug?  I would not have ever guessed that!  The way it held its front legs made it look like a praying mantis to me, but I knew something was amiss because the rest of it looked more like a walking stick.
Thanks again.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What bug is this?
Location: Buckeye, AZ
February 25, 2017 7:35 pm
My son found this bug on the carpet. He picked it up then dropped it on his leg and he said it bit him. We live in buckeye, AZ.
Signature: Jeff

Assassin Bug

Dear Jeff,
Assassin Bugs in the genus
Zelus will bite readily if carelessly handled, and the bite is reported to be quite painful, but it is not considered dangerous to humans.  This is a beneficial predator.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: insect that looks like chagas bug
Location: 32.0481°N   -112.758°W
February 13, 2017 12:12 am
I was hiking in Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument on 2-12-17 and discovered this bug on the top of a peak, elevation 3000 ft.
Signature: Curt

Blood-Sucking Conenose Bug nymph

Dear Curt,
Because of press coverage, many folks send us images mistaking Leaf Footed Bugs for Blood-Sucking Conenose Bugs in the genus
Triatoma, but you have the real thing.  This is an immature Kissing Bug in the genus Triatoma, a group known to spread Chagas Disease, though most cases are from the tropics.  Here is a BugGuide image for comparison.  According to BugGuide:  “Tetrapod blood, mostly mammalian, but avian, reptilian and amphibian hosts are recorded. The most common wild hosts are wood rats (Neotoma) but other common ones include armadillos, opossums and raccoons (possibly also skunks); synanthropic species may feed on livestock (horses, cattle, chickens), pets and humans.”  BugGuide also states:  “Bite can cause severe allergic reaction in humans. Bite and defecation into bite can transmit Chagas disease, caused by Trypanosoma cruzi, a protozoan, whose most notorious vector is the South American T. infestans. The North American species do not normally defecate at the site of the bite, and thus do not normally transmit the disease, though they can carry the parasite (Vetter 2001). Rare vector-borne cases of Chagas disease have been noted in the so. US. ”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Reb Bug with Long Black Leggs
Location: Montgomery, Alabama
February 9, 2017 6:26 am
I found this bug near grass in Montgomery, Alabama in February, but the weather has been spring-like. Its body was about 3/4 of an inch. Do you know what it is? Thank you!
Signature: Sheila

Immature Milkweed Assassin Bug

Dear Sheila,
This is an immature, beneficial, predatory Milkweed Assassin Bug.  Though they prey upon many plant feeding insects in the garden, they have been reported to deliver a painful bite if carelessly handled.  Immature nymphs are wingless while adults have wings and can fly.

Thank you!  Such a fast reply.
Sheila Mehta, Ph.D.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination