Thursday, 27 August 2015

Day 288 - Fabulously Super and Brilliant Forest Shield Bugs

Hey everyone, today's Day 288 and I thought I'd look at a little insect today that I saw at Kelling Heath while I was on one of my walks around the site. This beastie was found in part of the pine woodland there. I was busy looking at all of the bits pine cone that were all over the floor, the squirrels had been very busy, when I saw it.

Well I did my research and its surprising that I should find it in pine woodland as it seems they feed on deciduous trees. It must have got lost! Well, as you'll know from my photo and title, I'm covering the Forest Shield Bug or Forest bug today.

So, here are the facts:

  • Despite being called the Forest Shield Bug, they are also found in Towns and Gardens as well as Heathland.
  • Kelling Heath has every single one of these habitats meaning it's a pretty good place to see them. 
Head on with the beastie
  • They are found from June all the way to November. Believe it or not, these are the same times that the Yellow Under-Wing (another post I wrote today) are seen.
  • They have also been seen in early spring so it might be that they have two breeding cycles.
  • When I saw this one I had to look twice, they camouflage perfectly with the Forest floor. This is probably why they are called the Forest Bug.
  • This Shield Bug is part of the Family 'Spiked Shield Bugs'. This family has (you guessed it) Spikes on their shoulders!
  • The way you tell apart this Shield Bug apart from others is that the Shoulders are 'Square Cut' and Rounded at the front.
  • This species spends Winter as a young nymph and eats mainly Oak and other trees such as Alders, Hazel, Apple and Cherry.
  • When looking at some pictures on the internet of these, I found what their eggs look like. They are perfect smiley faces! (See the pic on the British Bugs website.)
  • They are around 11-14mm long so sometimes quite hard to spot along with their camoflage!

Here are some links to some more information:

Hope you enjoyed,


1 comment:

  1. They're such lovely little bugs, great captures, as always, Zach! - Tasha