Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada

Species Murgantia histrionica - Harlequin Bug

Harlequin Bug for California in January - Murgantia histrionica Orange/white spotted black insect - Murgantia histrionica Harlequin nymphs - Murgantia histrionica Stink Bug - Murgantia histrionica Garden Bug - Murgantia histrionica Mating Pair - Murgantia histrionica Harlequin Bug - Murgantia histrionica Harlequin Bug eggs and nymphs - Murgantia histrionica
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hemiptera (True Bugs, Cicadas, Hoppers, Aphids and Allies)
Suborder Heteroptera (True Bugs)
Infraorder Pentatomomorpha
Superfamily Pentatomoidea
Family Pentatomidae (Stink Bugs)
Subfamily Pentatominae
Tribe Strachiini
Genus Murgantia
Species histrionica (Harlequin Bug)
Other Common Names
Cabbage Harlequin, Calico Bug, Fire Bug, Terrapin Back(1)
Explanation of Names
Murgantia histrionica (Hahn 1834)
7.5-11.5 mm(1)(2)
Brightly patterned, distinctive, coloration variable

Native to Mesoamerica, invasive in our area: e US to CA (ME-FL to SD-CA) but rarely found in the north, the northern limits of the range fluctuate markedly depending on winter severity; migrates northward during spring and summer(2)(3)
hosts: primarily Brassicaceae (horseradish, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, mustard, Brussels sprouts, turnip, kohlrabi, radish); may also attack tomato, potato, eggplant, okra, bean, asparagus, beet, weeds, fruit trees and field crops(4)
Life Cycle
Eggs look like white barrels with two black hoops around; adults overwinter. The life cycle takes 50-80 days.(4)
first detected in our area: TX 1864
Internet References
Fact sheets: Knox (2015)(4) | anon. (NCSU)
Works Cited
1.California plant pest & disease report, Vol. 25 (Jan 2008 through Dec 2009)
Gaimari S., O’Donnell M., eds. 2011. California Department of Food & Agriculture, Plant Pest Diagnostics Branch. 108 pp.
2.The Pentatomoidea (Hemiptera) of Northeastern North America
J.E. McPherson. 1982. Southern Illinois University Press.
3.Catalog of the Heteroptera, or True Bugs of Canada and the Continental United States
Thomas J. Henry, Richard C. Froeschner. 1988. Brill Academic Publishers.
4.University of Florida: Featured Creatures