Adult Predatory Stink Bugs have a classic shield shape and tend to blend into their surroundings, but round-bodied juveniles come in a variety of bright colors.
Unlike herbivorous Stink Bugs, Predatory Stink Bugs feed on other insects. They are indeed predators, and fortunately the insects they eat tend to be trouble makers in the garden. Caterpillars and beetle grubs are easy prey for a Predatory Stink Bug so they are sometimes deliberately released in an area or garden to help naturally control pest insect populations.
Adults have pointed 'shoulder's and a wide body that tapers at the tip of the abdomen. The overall shape is like that of a shield, and many are brown. A long beak is used to pierce prey and kill it. Nymphs, or juveniles, have rounder, egg-shaped bodies and lack wings. The head and thorax may be dark or speckled with color. Many have white or pale stripes on the abdomen, and thick black bars down the middle. The overall color of just the abdomen may be bright red, yellow, orange, green, white, black, or a collection of many colors. The younger Predatory Stink Bugs definitely look different from their adult form. Recognizing this insect as an adult and nymph for what it is, and what it can do, is worth the effort to prevent mistaking this good garden friend for an enemy.
Scientific Name: Apoecilus spp.
Size (Adult; Length): 10mm to 20mm (0.39in to 0.78in)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.