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Bug of the Week: Burrowing Bug

Can you figure out what order this fuzzy black insect belongs to?

burrowing-bug1

Is it a beetle or is it a true bug? It looks and acts like a beetle at first glance.

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Do you remember the characteristics of a true bug?

  • Triangle-shaped scutellum (link shows more clearly) in the middle of the back, between the top of the wings
  • Wings half hardened and half membranous
  • Sucking mouthparts (like a straw)

Although you can't see the mouthparts, this is a true bug. It is a relative of the shield or stink bugs called a "burrowing bug," Family Cydnidae.

As their name suggests, these bugs burrow underground to feed on plant roots.

Otherwise, not all that much is known about them. Do you think that is because they are mistaken for beetles?

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