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Pests in the Northeastern United States

Editors: W.T. Wilsey, C.R. Weeden, and A.M. Shelton

Tarnished Plant Bug (Lygus lineolaris) - Life Cycle
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The tarnished plant bug is a brownish bug mottled with various shades of reddish-brown and yellow-brown. The adult is about 1/4 inch (6 mm) long and less than half as broad, flattened, and oval in outline.
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Eggs are laid on herbaceous weeds, vegetables, and flowers and are either inserted into the stems, petioles or midribs of leaves or into buds, or among the florets of flower heads. The eggs are elongated, slightly curved, and the outer end is square where it protrudes from stems. Hatching occurs about 10 days after the eggs are laid.

The eggs hatch into small greenish-yellow nymphs about 1/25 inch (1 mm) long. These immature forms have long legs, antennae, and piercing-sucking mouthparts. Nymphs feed constantly and are the most destructive phase of this insect. They grow rapidly, shedding their skin five times and gradually taking on the appearance of the adult. After the final molt, the now-adult insect is sexually mature with full-size wings.

The life cycle is completed in 3-4 weeks.

Damage inflicted by tarnished plant bug on beans

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Maintained by Jason D. Plate. Last updated Mar. 8th, 2007.