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red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

Posted by awat72 OK (My Page) on
Thu, Jun 16, 05 at 22:02

My yard and patio has been taken over by bugs that are red as young, and turn black with red stripe when mature. I cannot identify the bug, and don't know if it is beneficial or not. My guineas won't eat them, and I hate the idea of using DE or poison, but I can't kill them with my shoe fast enough. Any suggestions or identification will help.

One of my friends said she heard the forresetry depratment released similar described bugs to eat something in the river, but I kayaked this evening, and didn't see a one in the river.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

Are they box elder bugs? There was something about them on television the other day. Call your county extension office to be sure because if they are box elders you need to get rid of them before they lay eggs and start again.

RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

  • Posted by Rjj1 Ok USDA Zone 7 (My Page) on
    Fri, Jun 17, 05 at 12:56


A little better description of the insect might help. What are they doing? Are they on specific things or just overwhelming the landscape? Mating perhaps?


RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

Could it be the milkweed bug? I had them last year, but they didn't do much damage to my milkweed. It died all on its little own.


RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

YES! I'm being overrun with this little buggers myself! They are almost diamond shaped and the adults FLY when bothered. They live in the mulch. I have thousands of them. I'm going to go look up Box Elder bugs and see if that's them. I have no idea if they are harming plants. I never seem to catch them on any plants, just in the mulch. I swear, it looks like the ground is moving there is so many of them!

Yep--Box Elder bugs

I just googled Box Elder Bugs, and Yep. That's them. Everything I read says that they don't do damage to plants. Soap and water apparently works on them. I'm going to go experiment!

RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

  • Posted by OKC1 OK (My Page) on
    Sat, Jun 18, 05 at 11:46

I've not had boxelder bugs, but apparenlty some plants, like cedar trees and golden chain trees, attract them to your yard. Which is why I wouldn't plant either very close to the house. You might want to look them up and see what attracts them. I don't think it's the mulch, since I've never had them and have been using cedar mulch for years.
But who knows. Google and find out.

RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

They are living in my mulch in mega quantities and they are destroying all of the hostas! I have never had as many as I do this year.

RE: red and black bugs?!?!?!!?

I do as well! They are over running my yard, especially in the mulch areas. I sprayed them with a recommended insecticide from Home Depot but they have returned in massive quantities!

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