Please, Please, don’t eat the daisies

A neighbor stopped by to look at my daisies. My daisies are pretty healthy, but her daisies, she said, were being mutilated by an insect. I asked her to email me a photo of the invader. Here’s what she sent:

 

The photos were small but I thought I knew what the insect was (‘was’ because it looks dead in the 3rd photo!).  Early the next morning, I searched for the same insect among my dew covered daisies. I saw two spider species lying in wait for an unsuspecting meal:

 

I saw tiny beetles:

Beetles on daisies 2019

A closer look:

beetle on daisy 2019

There was a whole world of small insects calling the daisies home:

Daisy insect 2019

And then I saw it… the same kind of bug that my neighbor saw and I knew these insects were NOT the ones vandalizing her daisies. These insects are True Bugs, insect predators called Jagged Ambush Bugs.

 

 

Thanks to Wikipedia Creative Commons for sharing a better photo of a jagged ambush bug than I could:

Wikipedia jagged ambush bug

The funky little insect looks like it could audition as a dragon on Game of Thrones but it really is a beneficial garden bug. It’s called an ambush bug because that’s what it does. Camouflaged well, it waits patiently, then ambushes a visiting insect up to 10 times its own size, injects poison, and make a fast meal out of it.

That’s all the news from the insect world this week. I should add that my neighbor was pleased when I shared the good news but I’m sure she is frustrated in not yet identifying the culprit that’s eating her daisies. So far, nothing new.

11 thoughts on “Please, Please, don’t eat the daisies

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