Finally, five or more years after learning about ambush bugs, our Development Director, Glenn, found not one, but two. Or, more accurately, our Executive Director, Jen, did. No matter who found them, it was a thrilling moment. And there’s a lot going on; mating and murder. The male is on top and the female on bottom… and the female is feasting on a tiny pollinator that came into the Rocky Mountain Bee Plant. The Jagged Ambush Bug’s forelegs are thick and shaped like those of a praying mantis — perfect for grabbing and holding prey. In the same family as assassin bugs (Reduviidae), they have a beak-like proboscis used to stab prey, inject venom, and inject enzymes to break down the prey into “bug soup” that they can then drink up.
Photo by Glenn Marangelo on 8/29/20 in Missoula, MT