By: Marijn Rongen
November 21st, 2010

Firebugs in the tree

We came across this lot while working in our garden today. They were all gathered around this one small tree and was an insect we haven’t seen before anywhere,  let alone in our garden!

Firebug on wall

It took only a minute to find out what kind of bug we were dealing with, any concern that it could be a harmful insect was quickly taken away. It turned out to be a firebug which is actually not uncommon. It feeds on seeds, plant debris and other insects on occasion.

Firebug on wall

The smaller, wingless, mostly red ones are young firebugs called nymphs.

Firebug on leaf

The larger red and black bugs are adults. I like the colors, they come out very well in pictures.

  • Jack Regan

    I found these guys in Afghanistan also. I’d never seen the little guys and I was quite surprised to see the design when I blew the photo up. I used to call them “African Face Mask Beetles.”


    • MarijnRongen

      They get around! I’ve also seen some (probably related) bugs around here with similar markings but darker grey and brown colors.

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