Seed Bugs

Soosie said she noticed a growing population of these bugs after bringing her plants inside the screened porch of her Don Pedro Island, FL home before traveling. She added that these critters only come out after dark, are attracted to light and converge in the ceiling. View the photo on Instagram here.

Question:

What type of bugs did Soosie find, and how do you eliminate them, preferably without using pesticides?

Answer: Seed bugs

Lyle Buss, University of Florida entomologist, said that the bugs in the photo look like a type of seed bug (family Lygaeidae) and may be coming from a particular plant that is near her house and has flowers or seed heads. They are more of a nuisance pest when indoors.

According to Buss, several seed bug species in Florida can be found feeding on the ground under Ficus trees. If Soosie’s bugs happen to be one of those species, then they may be wandering indoors after responding to light.

Exclusion, such as keeping doors closed and windows completely shut, is the best method of pest control. Getting rid of the trees producing the seeds they like to feed on is another option, if there are eventual plans to throw the plants away.

If you would like your bug identified and additional information, a great place to start is your local County Extension Office. With an office located in every county, it has never been easier to partner with the University of Florida and your local County Government.

Send your question and bug photo to your local County Extension Office, and they will gladly answer all inquiries. To find an office near you, visit the Solutions for Your Life website, or contact us at sfyl@ifas.ufl.edu.

Photo Credit: Soosie Sirmons