Tarnished Plant Bug, Lygus lineolarisHost: Large variety of plants including apple, apricot, cherry, pear, peach, plum, quince, flowers, vegetables, small fruits, and cotton.
Habitat: Tarnished plant bugs feed with piercing, sucking mouthparts, sucking plant juices from the feeding site, causing injury to tree fruits when it feeds and lays eggs. Early season damage occurs on flower buds, blossoms, and young fruit. Small droplets of exudate may be present on the surface of injured buds. Within 1 or 2 weeks, the flower clusters may appear dried and the leaves distorted, with a distinct hole where the insect fed. Generally, later damage to developing fruit is more important than earlier feeding on flower buds. In apples, feeding can cause punctures or deep dimples to form as the fruit develops, and in peaches various deformities known as "catfacing" occur.
Description: The tarnished plant bug is flattened oval and pale green-yellow with a few black markings or reddish brown to black with a few pale yellow markings and about 1/4 inch long. On the back side of each wing there is a distinct yellowish triangle with a brown to black spot on the posterior tip. The head is small, with a long beak that projects back under the body when at rest.
Control: Please contact your local county extension office for current information.
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