Currently viewing the category: "Mirid Plant Bugs"
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Subject: Red and black bug
Location: Coote Island, Georgian Bay, Ontario, Canada
October 4, 2012 10:15 pm
Thanks for running this great website – I use it a lot to help identify bugs I’ve found!
I’ve attached pictures of one that currently has me stumped. I found it in July on an island in Georgian Bay (near Parry Sound, Ontario, Canada). It’s colours were very striking red and black. I can’t find it in my Kaufman field guide or online so far. If you could help, that would be great!
Signature: Kristin

Plant Bug

Hi Kristin,
We believe we have identified this striking insect as a Plant Bug in the family Miridae and the tribe Resthenini based on this photo on BugGuide.  Alas, we are not able to provide a species identification but it does appear to us to be a predatory species.

Plant Bug

Wow! Thank you for your quick response! The pictures match up very well. Thanks again!


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Black insects on green bean plants
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
May 7, 2012 7:45 pm
Hello! I’m wondering if you could tell me what these little black beetle-like insects are that are sucking the juices from my bean leaves.
Signature: Just Dave

Garden Fleahopper (female we presume)

Hi Dave,
Our first impression was that you might have Flea Beetles, but the antennae are wrong for a beetle.  After a bit of searching through the True Bugs, insects with piercing and sucking mouthparts, we found the Garden Fleahopper,
Halticus bractatus, by browsing through BugGuide where it is described as:  “Minute, black; antennomere 1 and often the middle of the second and the base of the third pale; patches of silvery scale-like hairs on the front wing. Sexes strongly dimorphic, females having the wings entirely thickened and ovoid so that they resemble small flea beetles, while the males have long normally constructed wings.”  Garden Fleahoppers are classified as Plant Bugs in the family Miridae.

Garden Fleahopper (male we presume)

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Tiny Little Guys
Location: Maryland
November 21, 2011 11:33 pm
Hi: I saw quite a few of these little guys around my garden this summer, in both of the colors shown. Not sure if it is the same bug that gradually changes color as it ages, or if the color is a gender difference, etc. They are about 1/4” long.
Signature: Barbara Thurlow

Tarnished Plant Bug

Hi Barbara,
In our attempt to identify your True Bug, we found this nymph of a Plant Bug on in the family Miridae on BugGuide that looks similar to your nymph, so we now suspect you have a Plant Bug which warrants additional research prior to posting.  We believe we have correctly identified this as a Tarnished Plant Bug,
Lygus lineolaris, based on photos and text on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “nymphs and adults feed on cotton, soybeans, and more than 50 other crops, plus commercially-grown flowers, fruit trees, forest tree nurseries, and weeds (Over half of the US cultivated plant species are listed as host plants for tarnished plant bugs(2))” and it is described as:  “Adult: a pale yellow “Y” shape on the scutellum is the most notable feature; elytra vary in color from light to dark brown; cuneus usually yellowish or clear, with a small black spot at the tip; color and markings vary between sexes and between overwintering and summer adults. Nymph: yellowish-green with 4 black dots on the back.”  The spots are visible in your photo of the nymph.

Tarnished Plant Bug Nymph

BugGuide also notes that it is:  “The most common plant bug in the US”

Tarnished Plant Bug


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Assassin Bug? (Maybe?)
Location: Singapore
February 18, 2011 9:10 am
I need an ID on this bug. =/
Signature: Crystal

Plant Bug

Dear Crystal,
Upon first opening your images, our initial impression was that this was a pinned specimen because of the unusual protuberance jutting from the thorax.  This is surely an interesting looking Hemipteran, but we are not yet prepared to classify it as an Assassin Bug.  It has extremely long antennae and thanks to your side view, the piercing and sucking mouthparts that help to distinguish Hemipterans from the members of other insect orders are plainly evident.  We have numerous errands to run this morning and we haven’t the time to research this identification at this time, but we want to post your excellent images in the hope that one of our readers may recognize this distinctive True Bug.

Hi Daniel and Crystal:
It looks like a Plant Bug (Miridae) in the genus Helopeltis, possibly  H. theivora. Regards.  Karl

Hi Karl,
What a treat to return from errands to find that you had identified this unusual Plant Bug.

Wow cool! Thanks a lot for the ID!

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Mystery insect
Location: NorthWest England
February 5, 2011 9:14 am
For the past 2 summers I have had a mystery pest attack my foxgloves, crocosmia and snapdragons and they are slowing spreading to more parts of the garden. They can fly and they move very quickly when disturbed. I’ve looked on lots of pest identifying websites but can’t find out what they are.
Signature: Charlotte Haynes

Plant Bug

Hi Charlotte,
These are Plant Bugs in the family Miridae.  Once we did a web search with the family and your location, we quickly identified your particular Plant Bugs as
Grypocoris stysi on the British Bugs website which states:  “The adults and larvae feed on both flower heads as well as small invertebrates such as aphids.”  Foxgloves are not listed as a food plant which are listed as “nettles in woodland, and sometimes umbellifers and white bryony.

Hi Daniel
That’s great. I was spending ages looking through pictures trying to figure out what they were.
Many thanks

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Location: Hawthorne, California
December 10, 2010 6:27 pm
Just wondering if I have this bee correctly identified. If you can tell me what the other two guys are on the bloom in one of the photos, I’d be most appreciative.
Signature: Thanks, Anna

Leaf Cutting Bee

Hi Anna,
There is a good chance that your bee is a Leaf Cutting Bee in the genus
Megachile.  This is a genus that has been split into numerous subgenera, as evidences by the taxonomy on bugGuide.

Ed. Note: May 21, 2011
Now is one of those times that being more aware of insect anatomy and not making identifications based on superficial visual identifications would come in handy.  We no longer believe this is a Leaf Cutter Bee.  We don’t believe any Leaf Cutter Bees gather pollen on their legs.  It looks like this native Bee is gathering pollen on its legs, or perhaps it just has long yellow hairs on its legs.  We wish someone would write in and give us a clear cut explanation of what species of Bee this is.  I am going to include more native Bees in my Theodore Payne Foundation talk on Saturday, 28 May, 2011 at 1:00 PM.

Probably Plant Bugs with Leaf Cutting Bee

We believe the tiny Hemipterans in your photo are probably Plant Bugs in the family Miridae, but your photo isn’t detailed enough to provide any tangible evidence toward that speculation.  According to Bugguide, Plant Bugs in the family Miridae are usually “adults 2-15 mm.

Quite Possibly a Plant Bug

Update from Anna:  August 20, 2011
Hi Daniel,
I finally got an answer from Steve Thoenes:
“I asked my friend Steve Buchmann and he wrote  the top one (on pink flower) is an Anthophora female, not sure of the  species.”
Hope this is of some help,

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination