Random Insect: Stilt bug nymph

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Stilt bug nymph (Hemiptera: Berytidae) photographed 06/22/2014 near Blissfield, Michigan.

Stilt bugs (Hemiptera: Berytidae) are small, delicate insects that can be recognized in part by their long, thin legs and long, thin antennae that are slightly enlarged at the tips. As hemimetabolous insects these true bugs undergo incomplete metamorphosis. Unlike holometabolous insects like butterflies, bees, and flies they don’t have caterpillar- or grub-like larvae that pupate into wildly different adults. Instead young nymphs like the one shown here vaguely resemble adults¬†and gradually become more adult-like with each molt. Their final molt into adulthood welcomes the addition of wings and functional sex organs. Nymphs like this have mere stubs of developing wings and are incapable of mating.

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Stilt bug nymph (Hemiptera: Berytidae) photographed 06/22/2014 near Blissfield, Michigan.

Most stilt bugs feed on plants, and most have a particularly close relationship with plants that have glandular trichomes. I plucked this individual from a common mullein (Verbascum thapsus, Scrophulariaceae), an invasive species from Eurasia that features fuzzy, trichome-covered leaves.

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Stilt bug nymph (Hemiptera: Berytidae) photographed 06/22/2014 near Blissfield, Michigan.

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About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Ecology, Entomology, Organism Interactions, Random Insect and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Random Insect: Stilt bug nymph

  1. kgjerdset says:

    I saw one of these in my yard. I was wondering what is was. Very cool!

    Like

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