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Spiny Soldier Bug Facts

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OTHER NAMES

Spiny predator stink bug.

TAXONOMY

Pentatoma maculiventris Say, 1831, Louisiana, United States.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

Elongate, about 0.35–0.55 in (9–14 mm) lengthy. Dull yellow to tan with small black punctures and a darkish spot on the rear; typically marked with purplish-red. Fore thorax with a distinguished backbone on every “shoulder.” Antennae are five-jointed. All the legs are about the identical form and dimension, and tailored for strolling. Basal a part of the forewing is stiff; the distal one is translucent. S*xes are alike. Larvae are broader, wingless, and dotted with pink, cream, and black.

DISTRIBUTION

Temperate North America and the West Indies; launched for pest management to European and Far East international locations.

HABITAT

Canopy of bushes and shrubs, a number of discipline crops, fruit orchards.

BEHAVIOR

Diurnal, surveying on foot the cover of vegetation and looking for prey and egg-laying websites. Prey is situated by sight, and tracks are adopted with the antennae and beak. Adults fly rapidly when disturbed. Young larvae are gregarious, dispersing progressively as they develop and molt; they rapidly stroll from plant to plant. A secretion produced by males attracts all instars performing as a cue to the presence of prey. Hibernation in litter, soil, or bark or beneath stones.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Adults and larvae prey primarily on caterpillars and beetle larvae but additionally on eggs, sucking them out; this can be a pretty generalist species. Densely furry caterpillars are averted, however dimension of prey is unimportant. If prey objects are greater than the bugs themselves, they slowly method the prey, lengthen their beak ahead, and pierce it from the facet with out touching it with their legs. Attacks typically are completed collectively, and different bugs might come to share an already attacked prey merchandise. If food is scarce, cannibalism happens. Some water or juices are taken; if prey are scanty, they will survive a very long time.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Mating happens within the end-to-end place on vegetation and lasts many hours. Some 15–30 cream to black, barrel-shaped eggs are glued onto leaves in unfastened oval patches. They reproduce all through their lifetime, which can final a number of months. Two or three generations per year are produced in temperate zones, however steady copy takes place in hotter ones.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not threatened.

SIGNIFICANCE TO HUMANS

Useful controllers of pests, mainly the Colorado potato beetle and caterpillars. Reared to be launched within the discipline. Their highly effective pheromone is produced commercially to appeal to specimens to orchards. A light-weight and uncomfortable irritation might happen on human pores and skin, however true bites haven't been reported.

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