After two years of wandering around my garden with a camera I don’t expect to find too many new species but last week I came across my first member of a whole new family: Miridae.
What are they? Hemiptera, or ‘True Bugs’, which are mostly sap-suckers. Shield bugs and the gorgeously-coloured Harlequin Hibiscus Bugs may be the most familiar members of the extended family.
Miridae is a very large family, with over 10, 000 known species; most are under 12 mm long and they often camouflage themselves in drab colours or, like the one I noticed, try to look like wasps so that predators leave them alone. Mine is one of the Helopeltis species, or Mosquito bugs, and would only be 4 – 5 mm long without its antennae.
(Apologies for a longer-than-usual gap in posting. A technical problem popped up last week and I didn’t have enough time to fix it until today.)