Wheelbugs- kissing bugs

Asked December 7, 2015, 11:52 PM EST

In the past 3 weeks, I have seen a number of these bugs (both at a local park & one at my home). Is the population increasing in the area? Should I call an exterminator to decrease the likelihood of them around my home?

New Castle County Delaware

1 Response

Do not make any treatments with insecticides targeting wheel bugs. Wheel bugs are fantastic predators and incredibly beneficial to have in the landscape around the home. They feed on numerous pest insects such as Japanese beetles and brown marmorated stink bugs. They also will eat other insects such as caterpillars, sawflies, bees, wasps, etc... They should be encouraged to be around gardens, flower beds, trees, shrubs, and anywhere else pests could be encountered. The important thing is to not handle them because they will bite and apparently their bite is painful. If you need to relocate a wheel bug, a mason jar or plastic container/cup can be used to scoop them up and carry them to the desired location.

Another true bug common this time of year is western pine seed bug and it frequently will try to come into structures (i.e., indoors/in homes). This insect is also not a pest and treatments are not necessary. I have not heard of this insect biting, although it may smell if handled. You could remove it from buildings similar to methods used for wheel bugs.