• Laboratoire des sols
  • Université de lorraine


 It is true that bedbugs do not live only on the surface of the ground,

but it is not uncommon to find some of their representatives in a trap pot

Classification (systematic position)
Source : INPN


Animal Kingdom
Embranchement (Phylum) : Arthropoda
Subphylum: Pancrustacea
Class: Hexapod
Subclass: Insecta
Order: Hemiptera
Suborder: Heteroptera

        size about 1cm


Morphological characteristics
Insects having a flattened and angular body in 3 parts (head, thorax, abdomen), 3 pairs of legs, 2 pairs of differentiated wings: the front wings are slightly hardened (called hemelytra in these heteroptera) and the hind wings which are used to fly, 2 long antennae. Presence of a biting-sucking rostrum.


Life cycle
Stink bugs mate and lay their clumped eggs (white in the green bug Palomena prasina ) in the spring on the leaves (mainly on the inside) and stems of plants. The larvae, which look like small adults, go through several instars which are often characterized by a change in size and color. The adults overwinter in places sheltered from the cold, such as bark or litter.


The majority of bugs are biting-sucking, they feed on the sap of plants using their rostrum. For example the green plant bug ( Palomena prasina ) as well as the red and black striped Italian graphosome plant bug ( Graphosoma italicum ) often found in gardens feed on plant sap and seed content. It is important to clarify that stink bugs, although they can cause damage, are never responsible for the death of a plant. Other plant bugs (less numerous in gardens) can feed on small live or dead prey such as caterpillars, aphids, mites and sometimes very small insects (especially beetles).


Natural predators or regulators
Bedbugs are little predated because of the odors they secrete but some of them are naturally regulated by parasites such as tachin flies.


Bedbugs live in all environments: meadows, gardens and undergrowth. Stink bugs need plants to lay their eggs in and micro-habitats such as bark and ground litter to be able to overwinter.


Interests in the garden
Bedbugs (for some species) can regulate populations of caterpillars, aphids and mites.


Did you know ?
The bad odor secreted by certain bugs is produced by odorous glands present on the thorax of the animal, glands that the bug activates when it is disturbed by a predator or a human. Bedbugs protect themselves from many enemies by this smell which brings an unpleasant taste to potential predators.

Last change : 03/04/22
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