Bronze shieldbug

I led a walk to find and identify plant galls this morning. Even though we got soaked it was quite successful with over 20 different species found and some people introduced to this fascinating area of natural history for the first time. It was almost as interesting for the different species of shieldbug seen - a useful spin-off from looking closely at leaves. This is surely the most colourful of our shieldbugs, Bronze shieldbug or (well-named) Troilus luridus. The adult is a bit duller; this is the final instar (juvenile stage). Typical of any teenager, it is rather more showy and flamboyant than its parents and when this one dropped from a Rowan branch onto a colourful Dock leaf, I had to get a photograph.

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