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Common throughout the UK and associated mainly with nettles, the foodplant for all life stages, this is a variable but distinctive species. The colour of the scutellum and cuneus ranges from cream to deep yellow and the pale legs are striped with black rings. Short dark spines are present on the tibiae. Head width ≈ 1/2 pronotum width, length of 2nd antennal segment > head width.
This bug may be found as an adult all year, and variation in colour is strongly related to age. On spring emergence following hibernation, the ground colour is typically darker and the cuneus more orange-yellow. Following mating, females may survive until the new generation of adults appears in mid-summer, which is generally paler and less intensely marked.
Compare: Orthops species
Adult: All year
Length 4-5 mm
|Adult: west London (May 2007) ©Julian Oliver
|Adult: west London (May 2008) ©Tristan Bantock
||Adult: Sussex (July 2006) ©Brian Valentine|
|Adult: north London (July 2008) ©Tristan Bantock
||Adult: Lincoln (October 2007) ©Mick Talbot
|Adult: Lincoln (October 2007) ©Mick Talbot
||Adult: (November 2007) ©Peter Birch|
|Nymph: Berks (July 2008) ©Jonathan Michaelson
||Nymph and adult: Surrey (June 2007) ©Ashley Wood|