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Monday, July 18, 2005

Green Ambush Bug


I first discovered this little bug last summer. They wait to ambush and prey upon pollinators that visit their flowers. This includes bees that are much larger than the bug.

Late last summer the bugs I found were about twice as large (as the specimen in the picture) and colored yellow and brown. I found them mostly in sunflowers, often sharing their trap with crab spiders.

This one, and all the others I've found this summer so far, are bright green and smaller. They're also on many different kinds of flowers, including this butterfly bush. You can see the beginnings of yellow and brown coloration on this fellow's back -- they weren't there last week.

I had the hardest time taking a picture of this fellow. I had to ignore my light meter and make the shutter speed a few steps faster. If I didn't, the bug was washed out. I also needed to make a light diffuser with a coat hanger and vellum and a reflector made from crumpled aluminum foil wrapped around some flexible plastic. Finally I got something that approximated what my eye saw!

I'm really lucky this fellow likes to be still. Posted by Picasa

2 comments:

regzgz said...

Good capture, this insect for some reason remind me the praying mantis for some reason.

Hypatia said...

Thanks! These guys are great about holding still -- completely nonplussed by people. He was a good practice subject for all my new equipment.

Oh yes, I can really see the resemblance. Those front claws are less complicated but still very deadly.