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Ambush Bugs Patiently Waiting To Pounce

8-15-17 ambush bug 049A1961Ambush bugs, a type of assassin bug, are true bugs, in the order Hemiptera. (Although insects are often referred to as “bugs,” technically only insects in this order are classified as bugs by entomologists.) All true bugs have piercing and sucking mouthparts, and wings which are membranous and clear at the tips, but hardened at the base.

 Ambush bugs are usually brightly colored (yellow, red or orange) and have thickened front legs which are used to capture prey up to ten times their own size. They live up to their name, patiently lying in wait for unsuspecting prey, often in goldenrod flowers where they are very well camouflaged. An ambush bug, upon sighting an insect, suddenly seizes the prey in its powerful forelegs and quickly dispatches it with a stab from its sharp beak. It then injects digestive enzymes into its prey, after which it drinks the resulting liquid innards.

9 responses

  1. Bill On The Hill...

    Hi Mary… Those front appendages have a praying mantis look to them for sure! Fantastic photograph as well… The bokeh is gorgeous. This is my preferred background shooting my hummingbirds with a long focal length lens, i.e., the EF 400mm f/5.6L @ typically f/8, iso 400, 1/1000 or faster if possible at the lenses minimum distance of around 14 feet… The image you are sharing here looks to be processed as close too perfect as it can get, well done…
    Bill Farr…

    August 15, 2017 at 8:41 am

  2. Alice Pratt

    Interesting but scary! Looks like a “lizard.” I’ve seen very small insects with ‘bug eyes’ & white fluff on their rears.

    August 15, 2017 at 8:59 am

  3. Elizabeth

    Not sure if my response should be “Yuck!” or “Cool!”

    August 15, 2017 at 9:29 am

  4. Ruth Gross

    Ruthgross35@gmail.com

    August 15, 2017 at 9:40 am

    • Ruth Gross

      Amazing!!!

      August 15, 2017 at 9:43 am

  5. nangalland

    Man, what weirdos! It’s a scary world out there….😬xox – Nan

    >

    August 15, 2017 at 2:14 pm

  6. Susan Showalter

    Is this photo too scary to share with the kids? It’s kind of a hoot, really, but I wouldn’t want to cause any bad dreams. Sure missing my Me-Me Mondays. A woman I play tennis with gets here grandkids (though she tries to have just one at time [wimp]) on Mondays and she calls it Funday Monday. She posted a pic on Facebook yesterday with her nearly 3 year old granddaughter with a huge smile. A wee bit envious for sure. Hugs to the kiddos or are you traveling again. If so, a big hug to you too. I love you all, mom

    “Unless the gentle inherit the earth there will be no earth.” [from ‘New Year Poem’ by May Sarton]

    On Tue, Aug 15, 2017 at 8:00 AM, Naturally Curious with Mary Holland wrote:

    > Mary Holland posted: “Ambush bugs, a type of assassin bug, are true bugs, > in the order Hemiptera. (Although insects are often referred to as “bugs,” > technically only insects in this order are classified as bugs by > entomologists.) All true bugs have piercing and sucking mouthpa” >

    August 15, 2017 at 3:19 pm

  7. Susan Showalter

    sorry last e-mail was to be to my daughter, a forwarded message, not a reply. so sorry.

    “Unless the gentle inherit the earth there will be no earth.” [from ‘New Year Poem’ by May Sarton]

    August 15, 2017 at 3:20 pm

  8. Vance ODonnell

    I saw one of these critters for the first time in one of our flower beds…it was a little different from this picture but had the similar features, the jaws, the large front paws (legs) and just looked prehistoric

    August 16, 2017 at 6:09 pm

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