Unusual insect

Asked November 4, 2019, 5:28 PM EST

In the attached file there is an insect crawling over a dahlia with a bee in its mouth. It kind of looks like a stink bug but is 5 times the size. What is it? I saw it on Oct 24th in Harford County.

Harford County Maryland wildlife wheel bug insect and spider id beneficial insects and pollinator

1 Response

This is a beneficial predator insect known as a wheel bug (a type of assassin bug.) In spite of the fact that this one is feeding on a bee, they are big predators of stinkbugs (especially the invasive marmorated stinkbug!) and even the latest invasive, the spotted lanternfly.

Here's more: https://extension.umd.edu/hgic/topics/predators-assassin-bugs

Ellen