assassin bug

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assassin bug,

common name for members of the family Reduviidae, one of the largest and most varied groups belonging to the order Hemiptera (suborder Heteroptera). Assassin bugs are generally brownish to black, medium-sized to large insects, with heads that are elongate and narrow compared to the thorax. The raptorial front legs are used for grasping prey. Most assassin bugs are found on foliage, and some occasionally enter houses. The majority of species are predaceous on other insects, but a few are bloodsucking and will bite humans if carelessly handled. The bite of some species is painless, while the bite of others is extremely painful, resulting from a venom produced by the bug, the effect of which lasts for months. A painful biter is the common, black, wheel bug (Arilus cristatus), easily identified by the semicircular crest resembling a cogwheel on the top of its prothorax. Another is the masked hunter (Reduvius personatus), often found in houses where it preys on bedbugs and other insects. The adults often bite humans around the mouth, hence its other common name, the kissing bug. In the Southwest assassin bugs of the genus Triatoma are common. Called conenoses or Mexican bedbugs, they also invade houses and may bite humans. In Central and South America certain species of this genus are the vectors for a highly fatal trypanosometrypanosome
, microscopic, one-celled protozoan of the genus Trypanosoma, typically living as an active parasite in the bloodstream of a vertebrate; hundreds of species are known. A trypanosome is long and pointed and possesses a flagellum.
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 disease known as Chagas' diseaseChagas' disease,
disease of South and Central America caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. It usually affects children and young adults and is transmitted by the feces of infected insects, typically the assassin bug.
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. Assassin bugs are classified in the phylum ArthropodaArthropoda
[Gr.,=jointed feet], largest and most diverse animal phylum. The arthropods include crustaceans, insects, centipedes, millipedes, spiders, scorpions, and the extinct trilobites.
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, class Insecta, order Hemiptera, family Reduviidae.
References in periodicals archive ?
We noticed that this assassin bug is very proficient at capturing specimens in motion like adult moths and mobile larvae, but is not able to detect the pest eggs, and less mobile larvae in their mines, or pupae.
Key words: Thread-legged assassin bug, Emesinae: Reduviidae: new species.
When Manica and Lisa Thomas, also of Cambridge, checked on male assassin bugs as they stood guard over their broods, the researchers never found one out foraging for food.
The assassin bug, a true bug, is named after its preying style.
He told them it was called an assassin bug and that it ate small insects, like cockroaches, using its mouth like a sharp needle to pierce the insects and suck out their juices.
Prey capture in the wild usually occurs on vegetation, and frequently, the assassin bugs remain rather exposed during capture and feeding (C.
BugWorld is the only place in Europe where you can see the likes of death stalker scorpions, giant centipedes, assassin bugs and the stunning Gooty ornamental spider.
London, Feb 14 (ANI): A new study by scientists in Australia has shown that assassin bugs stalk their victim on its home territory, or lure it away and eat it.
Assassin bugs were introduced from Europe, where they had gained a reputation as predators of bedbugs, which were a rampant problem in the Old World; their disguise as dustballs while developing as nymphs render assassin bugs less apparent.
These single-celled protozoa get shuttled among people and animals by several species of insects called kissing bugs or assassin bugs.
Many birds, frogs, lizards, spiders, and insects (including wasps, damsel bugs, assassin bugs, big-eyed bugs, minute pirate bugs, soldier bugs, and predatory ground beetles) feed on insect pests.