Both adults and nymphs of this predatory bug devour large amounts of thrips, spider mites, aphids and their eggs.
Minute Pirate Bugs
Both the nymph and adult stages of the pirate bug (Orius insidiosus) are insatiable consumers of soft bodied insects including aphids, spider mites, thrips, caterpillars and their eggs. Adult predators will consume over 30 spider mites in a day. Both stages accomplish this with a long proboscis or beak that pierces the victim and allows the bug to suck its prey dry.
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Immature pirate bugs are tiny, wingless and tear-dropped shaped, often brown and yellow-orange. The adults are also small, ranging from 1/12 to 1/5 of an inch long. Their eggs are deposited underneath plant tissue where they go undetected. The pirate bug’s metamorphosis, from egg to adult, takes place in less than three weeks, and two or three generations can hatch during a season. They are commonly found living on corn, soybeans, tomatoes and grain crops as well as on flowers and in landscapes. They can be attracted with vetch, sweet clover, alfalfa and daisies.
HOW TO RELEASE:
- Gently turn and shake the bottle to mix the contents.
- Spread the material evenly over plant leaves or clean rockwool slabs.
- Place in groups of 75-100 predators to encourage reproduction.
Note: Adults are 2-3 mm long, black with white to brown diamond patterns on their wings.