Common Names: Bigeyed Bug, Seed Bug
Scientific Name: Order Heteroptera, family Lygaeidae, Geocoris spp.
Size: Adult--1/8" to 1/4"
Identification: Adults are light yellowish green to dark gray with small black dots on the head. Have a wider body than chinch bugs and make more rapid movements. Eyes are very large, kidney-shaped, and reddish brown. Football-shaped eggs are whitish gray with red spots. Nymphs are smaller grayish and wingless with irregular patterns of spots on the top of the body.
Biology and Life Cycle: Incomplete metamorphosis. Several broods per year in the summer. Adults hibernate in garden debris over the winter. Adults live two to three months after maturity.
Habitat: Cotton, clover, winter grains, weeds, and alfalfa.
Feeding Habits: Often appear when chinch bug populations are high and feed on them. Both adults and nymphs feed on aphids, lygaeid bugs, whiteflies, leafhoppers, plant bugs, small caterpillars, thrips, corn earworm, tarnished plant bugs, and spider mites. All stages of both sexes are predaceous from birth until death, but they can survive on nectar and honeydew when prey is scarce.
Economic Importance: Very beneficial insect that helps control troublesome insects.
Natural Control: None needed.
Organic Control: None needed.
Insight: The proboscis (modified mouth structure) of the bigeyed bug extends like a hydraulic piston's ram in stages. This is one of the insects that will naturally reestablish if the toxic sprays are eliminated.