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Yucca Plant Bug (Halticotoma valida)


Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Yucca Plant Bug.


 Updated: 7/17/2014; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ¬©www.InsectIdentification.org



  Yucca Plant Bug  
Picture of Yucca-Plant-Bug


The Yucca Plant Bug is small on its own, but mighty in great numbers. Its shy nature makes it difficult to get a look at the plant-killing culprit.





Yucca Plant Bugs are small red and black insects that live on yuccas, a drought-tolerant ornamental plant. The bugs survive by drinking the plant's juices. They generally cluster at the base of the plant, but venture out individually onto the long blades (leaves). Their bright orange legs are fast, and once aware that they are being observed, the Yucca Plant Bug rapidly runs to the other side of the leaf or back down to the center of the plant to hide.

Yucca plants infested with this bug will start to show yellow spots on the leaf blades. In addition, the bugs leave dark brown specks of feces on the plant. The overall green color of the plant will fade into a yellowish hue leading the plant owner to think it may just needs more water. The plant is drying out, but only because of the constant drain on its liquids by the hungry Yucca Plant Bug. Eventually, if left unchecked, a population of bugs can kill the entire yucca.

Yucca Plant Bugs are fast reproducers. Three to five generations can develop each year. Females implant their fertilized eggs into the leaves of the yucca. Late season eggs will overwinter and hatch in the spring. Their young nymphs are much smaller versions of the adult (about 1 mm long). Due to this fast turnover, plant owners seeking to save an infested plant will need to apply an insecticidal soap treatments more than just once. Incomplete insecticide coverage may allow some bugs or eggs to survive and reestablish the population. Beyond chemical control, only a deep frost seems to kill the nymphs and adults, though implanted eggs will stay dormant and hatch in warmer months.
Basic Information
Common Name: Yucca Plant Bug
Scientific Name: Halticotoma valida
Category: True Bug


General Identification
Size (Adult; Length): 1mm to 4mm (0.04in to 0.16in)
Colorwheel Graphic
Identifying Colors: black, red, orange, brown
Additional Descriptors: tiny, shy, scared, flying, clusters




Taxonomic Hierarchy
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hemiptera
Family: Miridae
Genus: Halticotoma
Species: valida




Territorial Reach (A-to-Z)
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 below as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections below 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.
Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming
Canadian National Flag Graphic
Alberta
British Columbia
Manitoba
New Brunswick
Newfoundland and Labrador
Nova Scotia
Ontario
Prince Edward Island
Quebec
Saskatchewan
Mexican National Flag Graphic
Mexico


Territorial Area Map (Visual Reference Guide)
The map below showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Yucca Plant Bug may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data can be useful in seeing concentrations of a particular species over the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some species are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America.
Alaska  
Hawaii  
Prince Edward Is.  
State of Alabama graphic
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State of California graphic
State of Colorado graphic
State of Delware graphic
State of Florida graphic
State of Georgia graphic
State of Idaho graphic
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State of New England graphic
State of New Jersey graphic
State of New Mexico graphic
State of New York graphic
State of North Carolina graphic
State of North Dakota graphic
State of Ohio graphic
State of Oklahoma graphic
State of Oregon graphic
State of Pennsylvania graphic
State of South Carolina graphic
State of South Dakota graphic
State of Tennessee graphic
State of Texas graphic
State of Utah graphic
State of Virginia graphic
State of Washington graphic
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State of Wyoming graphic
Canadian territory of Alberta graphic
Canadian territory of British Columbia graphic
Canadian territory of Manitoba graphic
Canadian territory of New Brunswick graphic
Canadian territory of Newfoundland and Labrador graphic
Canadian territory of Ontario graphic
Canadian territory of Quebec graphic
Canadian territory of Saskatchewan graphic
Territory map graphic of the country of Mexico
Contiguous United States shape map layer graphic


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