Duke Insects
Species:
Euthyrhynchus floridanus
Common Name:
Florida Predatory Stink Bug
Order:
Hemiptera
Family:
Pentatomidae

Florida Predatory Stink Bug or Halloween Bug

The family Pentatomidae or Stink Bugs is a large group with over 200 North American species. They are often brightly colored or conspicuously marked. Some stink bugs are herbivorous and others, such as this species, are predators. When picked up they secrete a defensive chemical with a disagreeable smell, hence “stink bugs.”

The predatory stink bug, Euthyrhynchus floridanus, is considered a beneficial insect because it preys on a variety of plant-damaging bugs, beetles, and caterpillars. Immature Euthyrhynchus floridanus are highly gregarious and can attack larger prey in concert. This stink bug is primarily a Neotropical species that ranges into southeastern quarter of the United States. This particular specimen was found on the main quad on west campus at Duke University.

(1) Triplehorn, C.A. and N.F. Johnson, Borror and Delong's Introduction to the Study of Insects, 7th ed., (2005), Thomson Brooks/Cole.  

(2) Meed, F.W., and D.B. Richman. Florida Predatory Stink Bug (unofficial common name), Euthyrhynchus floridanus (Linnaeus) (Insecta: Hemiptera: Pentatomidae). University of Florida. Web: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/pdffiles/IN/IN31400.pdf.

(3)North Carolina Pest News. North Carolina IPM. Web. 19 Nov. 2009. Web: http://ipm.ncsu.edu/current_ipm/00PestNews/00News5/ornament.html.