Assassin Bugs

Family Reduviidae


Assassin Bugs attack and feed on insects, and occasionally other creatures including birds, lizards, and mammals. Typically they inject a "stupefying fluid" into their prey to put an end to the prey's resistance. All Assassin Bugs feed on prey (though note that occasionally an early instar nymph has been observed to insert its beak into a plant) (Henry and Froeschner, 1988).

With each passing decade, entomologists learn more about the life history of Assassins. Depending on the species, these bugs may overwinter as eggs, as nymphs, or in the adult stage. Most species are univoltine.

Assassin Bugs are not of importance in agriculture. While they do eat some pest species, they also eat some beneficial species, and some species that are neither pests nor beneficial to humankind (Henry and Froeschner, 1988).

Collectors and photographers tend to like this family, because Assassin Bugs are often big, brightly colored, or strikingly marked. Some of them have especially interesting structures, such as the crest of the Wheel Bug or the huge "forearms" of Ambush Bugs.


Click on the thumbnail to see a larger image with information about the species.

Rhiginia cruciata
Rhiginia sp.
Emesaya brevipennis
Bactrodes cf. femoratus
Arilus cristatus
Castolus sp.
Castolus tricolor
Harpactorinae nymph
Heza sp.
Montina sp.
Notocyrtus sp.
Pselliopus barberi
Pselliopus cinctus
Pselliopus sp.
Pselliopus sp.
Repipta antica

 

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