Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Mystery Bug

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Mystery Bug
Mystery Bug  

Mystery Bug
Mystery Bug  
I'm curious as to what this is.I found it on my garbage can yesterday afternoon approximately 3:00pm. I live in NW HICKORY NC CATAWBA County.. I hope you are able to open pics. I also have video of its movements. I did not see it fly and it moved in a "defensive manner" similar to a praying mantis maybe backing up and shifting left & right. It made me believe it might jump at me if I got too close so I didn't test the theory. I have never seen anything like this in my almost 50 years anywhere especially here.  Thank you for any info you may have.

Answer
Hi, Ann:

Thank you for including the nice images.

The insect is a nymph (immature, juvenile, "baby") Wheel Bug, a type of assassin bug in the family Reduviidae.  You might recognize the adult form:

http://bugeric.blogspot.com/2013/11/dinosaur-bug.html

Thank you for sharing your observations.  They can't jump, by the way, but are very alert to motion and respond accordingly.

Cheers,

Eric

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Eric R. Eaton

Expertise

I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.

Experience

Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Publications
Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Education/Credentials
Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

Awards and Honors
One of the top 50 experts in all categories for AllExperts.com, 2009.

Past/Present Clients
Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

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