Saturday, 22 November 2008

On the way home from market?

I'm not sure what's going on here. This insect was moving very quickly along the branch carrying something like a caterpillar. I wondered if it was caught on its proboscis rather than held. And where was it taking it if it was intentional? The second photo is not very clear but it shows the 'prey' more clearly (as well as the beautiful colouring, and knobby bits on the 'shoulder' area). Is it some sort of weevil?


Duncan said...

Hi Boobook, I've never seen one but I think yours may be an assassin bug, just googled up some pictures and it seems to fit.

Denis Wilson said...

Hi Boobook
I agree with Duncan. Assassin Bug is well named.
"Their piercing-sucking mouthparts, or Rostrum, can easily be seen which curve back towards body when not in use. They are used for punch into their prey's body and suck their juice. A bite from them can be very painful.
Chew Family Website
- Insects and Spiders of Brisbane has lots of good photos of them.

Yours is a good action shot.

Your guess about the weevil is fair enough, for this insect is described as having a long Rostrum. So there is a superficial similarity. But these are classed as "Bugs", whereas Weevils are classed as "Beetles".