Assassin Bug nymph

An Assassin Bug nymph in Hawaii

I was juicing tangerines in the kitchen when I noticed this little bug atop the pile of fruit. I took the tangerine it was on outside and tried to free it onto the rail there. The bug stuck to the fruit, scampering around as I rotated it. Eventually, it dismounted and I went inside to get my camera.

When I started taking photos, the bug accommodated me by approaching the lens. It quickly got too close so I moved to a different spot. The same thing happened. Every time I moved, the bug followed me until we both tired of the game and I left it in peace and it did the same to me.

At first, I thought it was a baby Praying Mantis because of the curve of its body, but a bit of research revealed that this is an Assassin Bug nymph. Assassin Bugs can deliver a painful bite, so maybe it was after me to take me out!

This one was only about half-an-inch long, as indicated by the average-size tangerine on the rail above and the fact the bug is standing on the thin side of a 2×4.

12 thoughts on “Assassin Bug nymph

  1. naturebackin

    An interesting shot of the tiny nymph. My husband once made the mistake of rescuing by hand a small assassin bug from inside the house. To defend itself from what it thought was a threat rather than a rescue it bit him on the thumb. It was instantly very painful – a clear blister soon appeared under the skin as the assassin bug injects an enzyme that dissolves or liquifies the tissues under the skin. Ouch.

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    1. Graham Post author

      That must have hurt. I was backing away much of the time, just because I wasn’t sure what it was, but knowing I didn’t want something like that to happen to me.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Graham Post author

      It assassinates other bugs. It’s hard to see in this photos but, folded under its head and neck is a large curved proboscis, which is used to stab and kill prey!

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