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Crucifer Shieldbug - Eurydema oleracea
Family - Pentatomidae
Also known as - Cabbage bug, Brassica Bug, Rape bug

A quite small shieldbug species 5-7mm (0.2-0.275in) long, black head and body with a green or blue metallic sheen, occurring in two colour forms, red and white for both males ♂ and females ♀.  These forms are seen as appropriately coloured dorsal spots with the red form being rarer than the white; these spots are yellow in young adults but change to their final red or white as they mature.  Their eggs are barrel shaped and a yellow green usually numbering about 55-80 incubated for about fifteen days, nymphs and first instars are black with succeeding instars gaining the coloured spots becoming clearer with older instars (five instars in all).  Native to the UK in southern areas and Western Europe, they overwinter as an adult, emerging in late spring.

Host plants are Cruciferae (cabbage family) feeding mainly on the flowers including Garlic Mustard, Horse-radish, radish, turnip, and rape.  There are usually two generations a year during June and July and August to October with adults hibernating over winter in cracks or crevices in the soil and on trees.  A rare parasitic fly Clytiomya continua is a parasite of the Crucifer Shieldbug.  Male Crucifer Shieldbugs are larger than the female.

Crucifer Shieldbug - Eurydema oleracea, click for a larger image Crucifer Shieldbug - Eurydema oleracea, click for a larger image Crucifer Shieldbug - Eurydema oleracea, click for a larger image, photo licensed for reuse
Sub adult yellow form
Two photos ©2006
Click any photo for a larger image
Photo ©2011 Hectonichus

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