Portraits of Wildflowers

Perspectives on Nature Photography

Western leaffooted bug

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Western Leaffooted Bug on Evergreen Sumac 0620

Click for greater size and clarity.

Here’s a western leaffooted bug, Leptoglossus zonatus, on an evergreen sumac, Rhus virens. The red orbs out of focus in the background are the ripe little fruits of the sumac.

I took this picture on Misting Falls Trail in my neighborhood on November 13th. In a post early this year you saw a different insect on a differently colored evergreen sumac leaf, and this past spring you saw a group of Leptoglossus phyllopus bugs on a decomposing thistle.

© 2013 Steven Schwartzman

Written by Steve Schwartzman

December 17, 2013 at 6:02 AM

10 Responses

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  1. In the middle of the linked article there was a mention of this bug’s fondness for Satsumas. There are several long-established Satsuma orchards west of me. This year’s crop was good, but I’ll have to ask the next time I’m there if they have problems with this critter.

    I wonder if he knows he looks like he’s on a serving platter. Maybe he’s just zoned out.


    December 17, 2013 at 6:22 AM

    • Till I found that article I had no idea that this little bug is an agricultural pest. The two pale spots on its pronotum remind me of eyes, but let’s hope the eyes of this Texas bug aren’t upon the satsumas near you.

      I wonder if it’s better to be zoned out than to be leptoglossed (i.e. slender-tongued).

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 17, 2013 at 7:54 AM

  2. We have large numbers of this species hereabouts also. Especially in the autumn when they find their way indoors with the various ladybugs. I find their markings very attractive.

    Steve Gingold

    December 17, 2013 at 6:33 AM

    • Till this year I’d almost always seen Leptoglossus phyllopus, with its unbroken white “belt,” but this fall I began seeing the broken-belt species shown here, including a couple inside my house, as you mentioned (sans ladybugs, however). Like you, I find the markings attractive.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 17, 2013 at 7:58 AM

  3. We get a bug in our porch room that looks a good bit like this (to this uninformed observer). Someone told us it’s a stink bug, but thankfully we’ve noticed no stink.

    Susan Scheid

    December 17, 2013 at 6:36 PM

    • Stink bugs generally have the shape of a shield, so if your bug looks a good bit like this one, it’s probably not a stink bug—as your olfactory has confirmed.

      Steve Schwartzman

      December 17, 2013 at 10:14 PM

  4. full of buggy goodness.


    December 17, 2013 at 9:12 PM

  5. Very nice closeup!

    Michael Glover

    December 20, 2013 at 10:23 PM

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