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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Keep finding this bug in my house


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QUESTION: We keep finding these bugs in our house in Northeast Ohio (Cleveland area). They aren't very big, less than 1/4" long. My roommate seems to think it's a kissing bug. I'm not sure. What do you think this bug is? Should I be concerned/contact an exterminator?

ANSWER:  Hi Michael
This a assassin bug. It belongs to the same family (Reduvudae) as the kissing bug but kissing bugs have different patterns. Assassin bugs are predators on other insects but I have handled them and never been biten

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QUESTION: Aren't they the same thing? A lot of things say that kissing bugs and assassin bugs are the same thing, and I've read a lot about Chagas being carried by them. Can these be harmful to my dogs? What can I do to get rid of them, now that they're appearing around my ouse? Sorry for the questions,

ANSWER:  NO they belong to different Genera. We are talking common names here Michael. The kissing bug belongs to the Genus     The Kissing bug belongs to the Genus Triatoma in a group called the Bloodsucking conenoses. Chagas disease is not carried by the assassin bug

The assassin bug belongs to the Genus Pselliiopus  The common names Kissing bug and assassin bug are used to  refer to the same insect but they are entirely different
Look up the Genera and see the different
 You have assassin bugs that are harmless to people and dogs. There is one species of assassin bug called the Wheel Bug that can bite and gives a bite more painful worse then any bee. The picture you sent me is not a wheel bug.  Getting rid of them? When it gets warmer they will leave. For now vacuum them up

Where you in the Cleveland area  I am biology professor at Lakeland community college in Kirtland

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QUESTION: I live in mayfield village, maybe 10-15 minutes from Lakeland. I actually took a few classes there before finishing my degree at JCU.

So I shouldn't worry about these? We've found about 10-15 over the last 6 or so weeks. Our house was uninhabited for about 1-1/2 years before we moved in last November. We've found some other random bugs in our home since the winter started letting up and were considering an exterminator anyway. Should we skip?

The only time that I would advocate hiring an exterminator is when the home is overrun with harmful insects like bedbugs, termites, pantry pests or carpet beetles. Your finding 10 or 15 harmless insects does not qualify. These bugs come in in winter to hibernate.  Almost all insect problems can be solved by the homeowner. My experience talking to people on this forum has shown me that the majority of exterminators cannot tell one bug from another and spray toxic materials haphazardly.
 This is a buggy world and insects will often get into all houses despite our efforts to keep them out. Insects are our chief competitors for our food and we cannot defeat them; all we can do is to hold our own against them. If we let up they will win

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Walter Hintz


I can answer any questions about insects and spiders.


I have taught science for over 57 years. I am presently teaching biology at the college level. I have done extensive graduate work in entomology.

Momentum Magazine The Ohio Journal of Science

B.S. In Ed Kent State Unuv M.Sc The Ohio State Univ National Science Foundation Fellowships: Electron Microscopy Univ of California Entomology Kent State Univ

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