Can anybody identify this bug?

audrey_gwMay 29, 2011

I always get an infestation of these bugs about this time of year. They are about the size of aphids and prefer the tender growth at the tops of the plants. So I originally assumed they must be some kind of red aphid. But the controls I use for the green type don't work on them. Besides, it recently occurred to me that they move much faster than aphids do. And about the only plants they don't seem to like are my roses--which would be a bit strange for aphids!

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missminni(6B)

Sorry I can't help id the bug...great picture...how did you get it to appear within your post instead of as a separate attachment....?

    Bookmark   May 29, 2011 at 3:23PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

Not an aphid.

It's a young true bug, family Hemiptera. Don't know which one until you can post an image of an adult. Could be a lygus bug which can be a pest if numerous.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2011 at 8:35PM
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audrey_gw

Thanks! To add photos I just use the following HTML code. With, of course, the page on which my photo is located inserted between the quotation marks.
IMG SRC=""

You do have to have your photo posted on another web site for this to work. And you also have to enclose the whole code between the following sort of brackets:

    Bookmark   May 29, 2011 at 8:37PM
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audrey_gw

I think I may have identified the bug as Poecilocapsus lineatus or Four-lined Plant Bug. Now I just need to find some predators for it!

    Bookmark   May 29, 2011 at 8:55PM
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jean001a(Portland OR 7b)

I think that predator will be you!

    Bookmark   May 30, 2011 at 12:50AM
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kimpa(z6b PA)

That four-lined bug is very fast and much trouble. I have been fighting them for years. I hunt them every day. Insecticidal soap works good when they are young. It is sometimes easier to shoot them with a spray than try to squish them since they are so quick. Clean up dead stems in fall as they lay their eggs in them. Search the internet for info about them. They are not plant killers but disfigure so many.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2011 at 8:30AM
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audrey_gw

Yes, this bug is big trouble, and seems to prefer the new growth at the tips of the plants. So, for types that I know will bounce back fast--such as evening primrose, coneflower, rudbeckia, etc.--I often just snip off those tips. And drop them in a bucket of water to drown the bugs. This probably does make the plants branch out better, but it also sets the bloom time back a bit. And makes the garden look ratty when it should be looking its best.

About the only predator I could find listed for four-lined bug is the jumping spider. And I suspect it's probably not widely available for purchase! So I'll probably be doing a lot more snipping.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2011 at 2:48PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Assassin bugs (several kinds), mantids, birds, and more are natural predators of such insects.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2011 at 10:20PM
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SeanX35X

I don't use any oils or pesticides for insect control as I grow organically. google Arbico. they specialize in beneficial insects. I ordered three praying manti egg cases. one for my yard and for my neighbors on both sides. one egg case hatches abou two hundred manti. They devour every insect you hate. and once they live out their life cycle they lay their own egg cases. so now I have an ongoing population of manti. I live an hour north of death Valley so its a desrt hot blazing summers freezing winters if my manti can stay alive year after year your area will support them as well. also consider Ladybugs these are literalyy the toughest bug in the pack they eat every single pest bug you can imagine problem is when they eat everything they move on to find more food. I even take my baby manti indoors to work over my bonsai and houseplants I leave a couple of windows open all the time for my cats to get in and out. so manti have an escape, or entrance if they choose. I grow vegetables, tobacco, fruit, housplants and bonsai. this was a permanent and inexpensive solution to my bug problem. Good Luck!!!!

    Bookmark   June 19, 2011 at 3:34PM
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