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Ant mimicing bug

Riptortus sp

Description:

Well they start off black but this red ant lookalike has a prominent proboscis and dots on its abdomen that belie its true identity.

Habitat:

Among seed pods of a black wattle in remnant habitat in an inner city park

Notes:

Two weeks back I spotted the black first (or second) instar and the (red) adult. I am making the risky assumption that they are the same species. http://www.projectnoah.org/spottings/893... This is called the pod sucking bug (and it was on pods) or the wide eyed bug.

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3 Comments

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 8 years ago

Excellent. I really should put my glasses on. :)

MartinL
MartinL 8 years ago

I like your question argybee. I spotted this one on the same acacia that I saw the others two weeks earlier. Their relationship is only suspected but I'm confident.
The black one is clearly an ant mimic and I agree that the red instar doesn't really have a good ant color. Yet bug nymphs are always flamboyant and overstated. Antennae are very important in ID'ing and I think these all have four segment but the longer distal segment looks like two.

Mark Ridgway
Mark Ridgway 8 years ago

I suppose we do have plenty of red ants but they are interesting shades.
Discrepancy with the adult antennae segments or is that not important?

MartinL
Spotted by
MartinL

Victoria, Australia

Spotted on Feb 24, 2012
Submitted on Feb 24, 2012

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