Jagged Ambush Bug

Subject: Identification please.
Location: Michigan, USA
August 18, 2014 6:43 pm
Hi Bugman,
Discovered two of these insects on my Butterfly Bush today, August 18th. One very black and spiny looking, the other displayed more detail and color. They are 8-10mm in length. I find the mantis-like front legs of special interest. They showed little concern for my inspection of them. Thanks for your help!
Signature: Sheree Cooke

Ambush Bug
Jagged Ambush Bug

Hi Sheree,
This is a predatory Jagged Ambush Bug in the genus Phymata, and they frequently await on blossoms for prey to arrive, which means many of their victims are beneficial, pollinating insects.  Do not be fooled by the small size of this stealth predator, as a tiny Ambush Bug is capable of subduing much larger prey, including Honey Bees.  See BugGuide for a comparable image.

Jagged Ambush Bug
Jagged Ambush Bug

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