Painted Bugs Mating: Invasive species from Africa

small black bugs with orange spots
February 13, 2010
there were hundreds of these little bugs crawling on some plants with a few dozen ladybugs mixed in, and they were about the same size. i was hiking in some hills in the los angeles area and it was yesterday, feb 12th
los angeles, ca

Painted Bugs mating

Dear naaman,
We first reported on the Painted Bugs from Africa feeding on our own Collard Greens and Kale in Mount Washington, Los Angeles in July 2009.  We believe this fecund species has the potential to become a serious pest on cruciferous plants in the cabbage family.  BugGuide also recognizes that potential.  UC Riverside Center for Invasive Species website also recognizes the threat.  It is interesting that in our garden as well as in your photographs, every adult seemed to have been caught in flagrante delicto, a good indication that there will soon be a new generation with even more individuals.  From the angle of your photograph, it is difficult to ascertain the identity of the mating Lady Beetles.

Painted Bugs and Convergent Lady Beetles Mating

Ed. Note: Additional images revealed these to be a pair of Convergent Lady Beetles, Hippodamia convergens, a native species.

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