Immature Wheel Bug bites youngster

Subject: This bug bit my son…
Location: Southeastern Pennsylvania
June 30, 2016 6:36 pm
This bug was in a flower bed in New Hope, Pennsylvania. My four year-old son didn’t see it before it bit his hand. It definitely caused him quite a bit of pain and the mark was noticeable, though it didn’t seem to have any signs of venom or poison in it. It happened today, June 30, on a very warm summer evening. The bug is about an inch long, silver and orange in color, and the tail was curved upwards, resembling a stinger (almost scorpion-like). Any help identifying it would be very helpful!!
Thanks so much!
Signature: Lauren, Concerned Mom in PA

Immature Wheel Bug
Immature Wheel Bug

Dear Lauren,
This is an immature Wheel Bug, one of the Assassin Bugs in the family Reduviidae.  With the exception of Blood Sucking Conenose Bugs or Kissing Bugs in the genus
Triatoma that are known vectors for Chagas Disease, Assassin Bugs are not considered dangerous to humans, however many species will bite readily.  Though we often caution folks to handle Wheel Bugs with care to avoid getting bitten, we very rarely get reports of bites from Wheel Bugs.  Other species of Assassin Bugs bite more readily.

Thank you so much for your quick and thorough response! It is great to know what this is and where it came from.
Have a great holiday weekend!!
Lauren Anton 🙂

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