First, down in the lower, left corner an adult Cactus Bug seems to be hovering in the vicinity of the brood, though normally we don't think of bugs as watching over their offspring. Cochineal scale on cactus is initially a nuisance but, in extreme infestations, can weaken and kill the plant. The females, wingless and about 5 mm (0.20 in) long, cluster on cactus pads. You can see the exuvia (shed skin) at the top left and a string of new eggs on the thorn on the right. Therefore, instead of this bug's life cycle consisting of egg-larva-pupa-adult, it is egg-nymph-adult. After mating, the fertilised female increases in size and gives birth to tiny nymphs. When the eggs hatch, the nymphs feed on the plant for three weeks, moving all around the plant. The Insect and the Nopal Cactus Cochineal insects have a flat, soft body, and oval-shaped scale. They penetrate the cactus with their beak-like mouthparts and feed on its juices, remaining immobile unless alarmed. Both nymph and adult forms of prickly pear cactus bugs feed on the pads of prickly pear. By Jolie Krupnik (November 2019) Notice the circular white spots on the opuntia pad at the bottom right of the photo, which are a result of the bugs sucking the sap from the pad. Young nymphs gather and feed to-gether as they develop through stages, called instars. Cactus bug, nymphs (immature), Chelinidea vittiger, subfamily Coreinae, family Coreidae. CACTUS BUG NYMPHS Now the results of last November's orgiastic period are in evidence, as shown below: That photo shows three things worth noting. So I guess this rare species will survive here in our backyard. They sort of resemble an assassin bug, or agave bug. So, we recently discovered these bugs invading a prickly pear cactus near our front door. Small yellowish green bug that blended in nicely to the colors of the cactus. Both nymphal developmental stages and adults can produce large, pale blotches . Nymphs are like adults, except that their wings aren't developed and they're smaller. Another true bug, Hesperolabops gelastop (Fig. Cochineal insects are soft-bodied, flat, oval-shaped scale insects. The cottony, waxy mass is produced to shelter the female insects and their eggs. These small insects suck on cacti leaves. This older nymph, still red (teneral) and soft after its last molt before reaching adulthood, fell victim to a jumping spider. That's a nymph below: Plenty of this bug's nymphs ranged the cactus along with the grown-ups. They use special structures to pierce the tough leaves and suck the sap from the pad, resulting in conspicuous white to brown dime-sized rings after feeding has been in progress a while. Found a huge colony of cactus bug nymphs today (Chelinidea vittiger aequoris) They look like this: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/in365 The females cluster on cactus paddles, feeding on its juices. spines, and both the adults and the nymphs feed on these cacti by biting into their skin and sucking their vascular fluids. □ The photographer found these young nymphs of cactus bugs, some of them actually on nopal cacti. Adults are small, fast-moving bugs with reddish heads and When young, the nymphs may have a red or a black head and thorax, and green abdomen (as shown here). 4), also infests cacti. After mating, they give birth to nymphs that secrete a waxy white substance over their bodies for protection. Hey Bugman! Roundish abdomen. INVASION! Dear Victoria, These are multiple instars or developmental stages of immature Cactus Coreids, Chelinidea vittiger, which are pictured on BugGuide.. 1 ⁄ 4. to ½ inch in diameter on cactus pads. Add Comment. 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