Shield bug-Do I look like a tortoise? -Melbourne


Joined October 2010

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Nikon D7000
Tamron macro 90mm
my backyard, Melbourne, Australia

A Shield bug -Stink Bug Nymph, Acrosternum hilare whose shell looks like a tortoise shell.
Found lots of these bugs on my dead holly hock flower heads.
From the internet:
Shield Bugs are well known for their ability to produce a foul odor secreted from the thoracic glands in adults and from the abdominal glands in nymphs. Some species are brightly colored to warn predators of the foul-smelling, bitter liquid. Other species have muted colors to blend into the environment.
The stink gland secretions are said to contaminate fruit when left on plants where Shield Bugs feed.
Giant Shield Bugs are reported to harm citrus crops.
The family Scutelleridae is reported to be a very serious pest of wheat and barley in West Asia. These Shield Bugs are referred to as “sunn pests” and damage crops by feeding on leaves, stems and grains. During feeding they are said to inject chemicals that harm the quality of flour made from these grains.
The helpful stinkbugs kill other insects that do more harm to plants than they do themselves eg certain types of beetles and caterpillars and even some other stinkbugs..

Featured in

Amazing Wildlife 16th April 2011

DSLR User Group 16th April 2011

Closeups in Nature 23rd April 2011

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Let There Be Light bug me challenge 24th May 2011
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