Picasso Bug

Sphaerocoris annulus ?

a Picasso Bug, Sphaerocoris sp., Scutelleridae, from Eldoret, Kenya. Photo © by Michael Plagens

Observed at Eldoret Kenya. December 2013. This insect is about 12 mm long. It was found feeding on seed heads of Vernonia gallamensis.

This insect appears to be a fanciful creation of an abstract artist rather than a living insect designed to survive in a world full of birds and other animals that subsist on insects. Perhaps this pattern is a warning as many scutellerids can emit noxious chemicals if attacked. Or else the pattern makes the insect disappear under bright sunlight. For those who appreciate nature, for sure, it elicits "Wow!".

Scutelleridae -- Shield Bug Family

More Information:

Kenya Natural History

Copyright Michael J. Plagens. Page created 17 April 2014