So at some point before these eggs hatched, I thought, ‘gosh, I really don’t know what will come out of here. Maybe it won’t be a docile caterpillar like the Monarch. I should separate them, just in case.’ And I did. Which turned out to be a really good thing because guess what came out of those two beautiful eggs?
Two small–but fierce–assassin bugs! Even without having ever seen or heard of this insect, I am sure you can guess a bit about their habits! They are of course ASSASSINS! They are predators, feeding on other insects and invertebrates.
There are 6,000 different kinds of assassin bugs in the world. All are predators that have a long beak that consists of 3 segments plus a single tube. Unlike many other animals, they do not have internal digestion, but rather external digestion.
They use their beak to inject a paralyzing toxin into their unsuspecting prey. Then they suck out the body fluids. Yum, right? I hope you’re not trying to eat breakfast as you read! If so, my apologies!
The toxin works quickly, able to kill a cockroach in only a few seconds and a caterpillar in less than 10. Probably a good thing for the animal about to be sucked dry.
Assassin bugs will molt 4 times before becoming their adult size and color.
Have you ever seen one of these bugs? If not, be on the lookout as they are pretty interesting to watch.
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