Shieldbacked Pine Seed Bug

You would think narrowing down an identification to “shield bug” would have you almost done, wouldn’t you? Man, that doesn’t even narrow it down to family. It was ridiculous trying to get this handsome little guy down from “bug” to “stink bug” (nope) to “soldier bug” (nope) to “shield bug” (nope) to “shieldbacked bug” (at last!) to “shieldbacked pine seed bug” (Tetyra bipunctata).

Shieldbacked pine seed bugs…uh…eat pine trees…and…yeah. Their Wikipedia article can be kindly described as “a stub”. The longest web page I could find on it has more information about its wasp predator than about the bug. I see it listed with the words “invasive” and “pest” but no context, and find a few journal articles here and there saying things like “first sighting of….” This article describes a little about its life cycle. It’s probably a good guess that it’s not good to see a bunch of these on a pine tree, and beyond that…hey! Cute lil eyeballs!

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