African Painted on Orange found on Cyprus

Beetles on oranges?
Location: North Cyprus
October 20, 2011 3:04 pm
I am trying to identify this to see if it is harmful to the oranges and other citrus trees around.
Signature: Richard

African Painted Bugs, we believe

Hi Richard,
We hope we are wrong on this identification.  These sure look to us like African Painted Bugs,
Bagrada hilaris, a tiny Stink Bug that was first reported in Southern California a few years ago.  It is spreading fast.  It is typically found in association with crops in the cabbage family.  We tried a web search for citrus and found photos of a lemon tree infested with African Painted Bugs on an Arizona Education Extension website.  We predicted several years ago that the African Painted Bug could become the most serious new agricultural pest in Southern California.  Perhaps the African Painted Bug has also been accidentally introduced to Cyprus.

Thank you so much for your reply Daniel, I shall let you know what happens, I may need to report this to the Ministry of Agriculture here.

2 thoughts on “African Painted on Orange found on Cyprus”

  1. A heavy infestation of Bagrada hilaris has been observed on clementine oranges. The feeding of the bugs seems to have caused premature fruit color change from green to orange followed by massive fruit drop. (Oct, 2, 2012)
    This observation was made on a backyard tree located on the southern coastal plain of Israel.
    This host/pest association is of particular note since, other than one picture posted on the internet (on this site, from Cyprus), citrus has not previously been reported as a host of this insect nor been reported to suffer damage from its feeding.

    • Thank you for your comment. If African Painted Bugs are truly pests that will infest citrus trees, the California agricultural industry will have a new invasive exotic species to contend with.


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