Mountain Laurel Bug
Photo by Ted Lee Eubanks
Common Name: Mountain laurel bug, Red mountain laurel bug
Scientific Name: Lopidea major
Photo by Annette Segrato
Notes: Indians in Texas were known to consume small quantities of the seeds as a hallucinogen. The mountain laurel bug (Lopidea major) uses the same toxins to ward off predators. You will see these bugs on your mountain laurels in early spring. They do mar the surface of the leaves, but otherwise they are harmless to the plant.