Assassin and Ambush Bugs; Butterfly and Caterpillar Enemies
Assassin and Ambush bugs
roam in our gardens and yards, fields and roadsides, enjoying living lunches.
These critters pierce the body of butterflies and many other insects. They are definitely butterfly enemies.
In the above left photo, an Veronica bug has a skipper butterfly for its lunch.
In the above right photo, an Veronica bug has a duskywing butterfly for its supper.
These bugs are small yet deadly. They blend in well among flowers and blooms.
Milkweed Assassin Bug
A nymph milkweed assassin bug nymph is orange and a deadly enemy to small bugs. In the above left photo, a nymph has just finished molting. Adult milkweed assassin bugs are orange with black markings and very vaguely resemble milkweed bugs. (Milkweed bugs feed on milkweed seed pods and milkweed plants, not often on other insects although they have been known to kill young Monarch caterpillars.) Adult milkweed assassin bugs are in the upper right and lower left photographs.
Ester was moving leaves of a pawpaw plant and felt a sharp pain. The only insect she could see was a milkweed assassin bug. This photo shows where her finger was pierced.