Unknown True Bug is British Olympic Bug

Subject: Unknown Insect
Location: Lincolnshire, England
July 23, 2016 7:01 am
This landed on my arm. I have no idea what is neither do the people on Reddit. It’s roughly half an inch big, I’m in Lincolnshire, England. It’s fully intact and it has wings. Help me indenting this.
Signature: Elliot Cutts

Possibly Unknown True Bug
Olympic Bug

Dear Elliot,
We might even be more confused about this critter’s identity than you are.  At first glance, we thought perhaps we were seeing a headless mantid because of the raptorial front legs, until we realized those were the antennae and there were three complete sets of green legs.  The antennae seem to be the best clue in your image for identification purposes, and our best guess at this time is that this might be a member of the True Bug suborder Heteroptera because according to BugGuide, True Bugs can be identified by:  “Antennae, when not hidden, have 4-5 segments.”  Also, some True Bugs have modified antennae like this North American Giant Mesquite Bug.  We have not had any luck locating anything remotely similar looking on the British Bugs Heteroptera page, nor have we had any luck locating anything similar looking on UK Safari.  It is possible we missed something, but we can’t help but to wonder if perhaps this is a recently introduced species, or an exotic rogue that just happened to have found its way to your arm. We have sought some professional assistance, and perhaps our readership will write in with suggestions.

Eric Eaton identifies Olympic Bug
Hi, Daniel:
I think it *is* native.  It is the “Olympic Bug,” Heterotoma planicornis, a type of mirid plant bug.  Here’s more about it:
Cool critter, thanks for sharing!

According to British Bugs:  “The broad and flattened 2nd antennal segment, dark ground colour and contrasting greenish legs make this species unmistakeable.   Abundant throughout most of Britain on various plants and trees, in particular nettles. Both adults and the reddish nymphs feed on small insects as well as plant buds and unripe fruits.”

1 thought on “Unknown True Bug is British Olympic Bug”

  1. Cool. I love bugs as long as they aren’t in my house or crawling on me. This is a truthfully odd bug. I’ve never seen one, as I am in Alabama, USA.


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