Can you spot the insect hiding in the yellow bells flowers?
It is probably waiting for an insect to stop by the flowers to gather nectar and pollen.
It is an assassin bug nymph...
...waiting for its next meal.
It is a nymph rather than an adult because its wings are not fully formed yet. You can see the wing buds along the sides of the thorax (midsection).
Photograph of adult
(Assassin Bug Egg Mass by Jim Kalisch, UNL Entomology)
The adult will lay eggs similar to these to start the cycle all over again.
Are insects still active where you live?
The name says it all for this insect. It is the yellow-bellied bee assassin bug (Apiomerus flaviventris). This species seems to be found most commonly in Arizona. It waits for bees to land on flowers and then grabs them.
Colorful isn't it? Thanks to Deb for suggesting the trip to the garden where we saw this.
Upon revisiting the same plants again and again while searching for the bug of the week, I've made an interesting discovery. Although we think of insects as being highly mobile, a few do settle down for a period of time and make a plant their home. For example, the tarantula hawk from last week is still around. It seems to be a male and it has staked out one of our milkweed plants as his very own. We've started calling him our "pet" tarantula hawk wasp.
Going back to where I found the assassin bug earlier, I was surprised to find this adult assassin bug. The adult looks very different from the bright orange nymph. It is green with dark red on its wings. Would you have recognized it? I wonder if it the same one...