Keelbacked Treehopper

Help with identifying a bug???
Help! I’ve seen these before, a long time ago, but now they’re suddenly ALL over my tomato and pepper seedlings… What are they, what evil are they doing to all my seedlings, and what’s my best bet for getting rid of them? Thank you so much in advance!
Kim Dryden
San Diego Lock & Safe

Hi Kim,
This is a Keelbacked Treehopper, Antianthe expansa. They are found on eggplants and other solanaceous plants as well as peppers and tomatoes. They are sucking insects that will drain your plants of vital fluids. Infestations are especially injurious to young plants. They immature stage of the insect is black and spiny, and they form large colonies, sometimes accompanied by adults. We remove them manually from our garden and squash them mercilessly, though soapy water will probably help.

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