Spined Soldier Bug

Soldier Bug

A voracious predator, spined soldier bugs prey on some of the most potentially-damaging grubs, caterpillars and soft-bodied insect pests including the European corn borer and corn earworm, Gypsy moth caterpillars, the cabbage looper and cabbage worm, flea beetles and Colorado potato beetles, fall armyworms and beet army worms, the diamond back moth, the cotton boll worm, and the Mexican bean beetle. Varying in color from brown to yellow and speckled with black spots, Podisus maculiventris is common throughout the United States.

Highly mobile, adult soldier bugs will scurry or fly among plants to discover prey. They suck out their victims’ juices by penetrating it with its large, weapon-like proboscis. Adult female lay barrel-shaped egg clusters colored gray, cream, or gold on stems and leaves, each cluster containing 20 to 30 eggs. Female will lay up to 1,000 eggs during their lifespan. Nymphs, which are predacious in four of their five stages, stay close to their egg clusters until they begin seeking prey of their own. Females can live five to eight weeks depending on conditions, males slightly longer. Because the spined soldier bug preys on nearly 100 different pests, it’s highly effective in both gardens and greenhouses.

Feeding Nymph
Feeding Adult
Podisus maculiventris
Feeding Adult
 Soldier Bug Adult Podisus maculiventris

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