Don’t Mean Ta Bug Ya

I had just finished doing the dishes yesterday when I found a leggy little insect about an inch long crawling along the sink. My guess was that it hitched a ride on me when I was doing yardwork earlier that morning so I tried to coax it onto a piece of paper to return it to the wilds of our backyard but it would have none of it.

Eventually it crawled up on my hand and I went outside with it, then decided to get a pic of it, went back inside grabbed the cam from my desk, came back outside and turned the cam on only to find the battery dead, so went back to my desk and loaded the cam up with a spare battery and went back outside… all the while with this fella crawling up and down my arm. Eventually it made its way back to my hand and I got this macro of it on the butt of my palm (click to triplify):

At first I thought it might be a weeeee little mantis, but mantis babies have larger heads and of course those awesome front appendages. Some subsequent googling yielded no answers as to what the bug might be so I dropped in on and took a quick look around, but still couldn’t solve the mystery, so I sent them an email with the above photo in hopes of getting a clue.

Turns out from the good folks there emailed me back with the info that it’s an assassin bug nymph and I guess I’m pretty lucky in that what with all the back and forth walking I did with it on my arm it didn’t afflict upon me what’s reported to be a pretty painful bite. Perhaps not as painful as an adult’s, but still I’ve been bitten by voracious ladybug nymphs and those make me go ouch so all in all this cooperative killer spared me some minor agony and in turn it got deposited safe and sound on a bougainvilea branch to go hunt something its bite wouldn’t be wasted on.