Heteroptera

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Families encountered in southern Africa

Coleorrhyncha

 
 

Peloridioidea

 
   

Family: Peloridiidae

 

 

Enicocephalomorpha

 
 

Enicocephaloidea

The family Aenictopecheidae has not been recorded from southern Africa.

 
   

Family: Enicocephalidae (gnat bugs)

Live mainly under stones, in leaf litter, under bark or in rotting logs, where they are predators of other insects and arthropods. They look superficially similar to assassin bugs (Reduviidae) but are not related to them at all. They can be distinguished easily by having totally membranous wings and by the elongate head with a constriction behind the eyes and then behind that constriction a round swollen portion.About eight genera and 40 species have been recorded from southern Africa.

Dipsocoromorpha

 
 

Dipsocoroidea

Families not recorded from southern Africa: Ceratocombidae and Stemmocryptidae.

 
   

Family: Dipsocoridae

Recorded from southern Africa but no described species.

 
   

Family: Hypsipterygidae

Tiny bugs (about 1.5 mm long). There are two recorded species from Africa and one from Thailand. This family probably occurs in southern Africa but there are no confirmed records.

 
   

Family: Schizopteridae

Tiny bugs (about 0.8 - 3 mm). Humpatanannus brincki is the only described species from for southern Afrca but there are a few more undescribed species.

 

Gerromorpha

 
 

Mesovelioidea

 
   

Family: Mesoveliidae

 

 
 

Hebroidea

 
   

Family: Hebridae (velvet water bugs)

Found on floating vegetation and wet moss and predatory on small athropods. Sometimes walk across the water surface.

 
 

Hydrometroidea

 
   

Family: Paraphrynoveliidae

 

 
   

Family: Macroveliidae

 

 
   

Family: Hydrometridae

 

 
 

Gerroidea

 
   

Family: Hermatobatidae

 

 
   

Family: Veliidae

 

 
   

Family: Gerridae (pond skaters, water striders)

 

 

Leptopodomorpha

 
 

Leptopodoidea

 
   

Family: Leptopodidae (spiny shore bugs)

A rare group found on rocks in fast-flowing mountain streams in subtropical regions. Probably predatory on small insects.

 
   

Family: Omaniidae

 

 
 

Saldoidea

 
   

Family: Aepophilidae

 

 
   

Family: Saldidae (shore bugs)

Occurs alongside streams and other water bodies. Predators of small insects.

 

Nepomorpha

 
 

Nepoidea

 
   

Family: Nepidae

 

 
   

Family: Belostomatidae

 

 
 

Octeroidea

 
   

Family: Ochteridae (velvet shore bugs)

 

   

Family: Gelastocoridae (toad bugs)

 

 

Corixoidea

 
   

Family: Corixidae (water boatmen)

 

 

Naucoroidea

 
   

Family: Naucoridae

 

 
 

Notonectoidea

 
   

Family: Notonectidae (backswimmers)

 

 
   

Family: Pleidae

 

 
   

Family: Helptrephidae

 

 

Cimicomorpha

 
 

Cimicoidea

Families not recorded from southern Africa: Plokiophilidae, Medocostidae and Velocipedidae.

 
   

Family: Anthocoridae (minute pirate bugs)

Small bugs (2 - 5 mm long) that are predators of other arthropods and their eggs (e.g. plant mites, larvae and eggs of Lepidoptera, thrips, and Hemiptera such as leafhoppers, psyllids, scale insects and whiteflies). Found in a variety of situations including on shrubs and flowers, under bark, and in leaf litter. About 12 genera and 40 species have been recorded from southern Africa.

 
   

Family: Cimicidae (bedbug family)

Blood-sucking ectoparasites that live in the sleeping places and nests of mammals and birds. About 5 genera and 10 species have been recorded from southern Africa, including the Common Bedbug Cimex lectularius.

 
   

Family: Polyctenidae (bat bugs)

Blood-sucking ectoparasites of bats. The only species from southern Africa is Androctenes horvathi, which has been recorded on Rhinolophus eloquens (Andersen's horseshoe bat).

 
   

Family: Nabidae

Medium-sized (4-11 mm) predatory bugs that feed on small insects, other small arthropods, and insect eggs. About seven genera and 20 species have been recorded from southern Africa.

 
 

Miroidea

 
   

Family: Miridae

 

 
   

Family: Microphysidae

 

 
 

Tingoidea

 
   

Family: Vianaididae

 

 
   

Family: Tingidae

 

 
   

Family: Joppeicidae

 

 
 

Thaumastocoroidea

 
   

Family: Thaumastocoridae

 

 
 

Reduvioidea

 
   

Family: Pachynomidae

 

 
   

Family: Reduviidae (assassin bugs)

 

Pentatomomorpha

 
 

Aradoidea

 
   

Family: Aradidae (flat bugs)

 

   

Family: Termitaphididae

 

 
 

Idiostoloidea

 
   

Family: Idiostolidae

 

 
 

Piesmatoidea

 
   

Family: Piesmatidae

 

 
 

Lygaeoidea

 
   

Family: Colobathristidae

 

 
   

Family: Malcidae

 

 
   

Family: Berytidae

 

 
   

Family: Lygaeidae

 

 
   

Family: Largidae

 

 
   

Family: Pyrrhocoridae (red bugs)

 

 

Coreoidea

 
   

Family: Stenocephalidae

 

 
   

Family: Hyocephalidae

 

 
   

Family: Coreidae (tip wilters)

 

Anoplocnemis curvipes
   

Family: Alydidae (broad-headed bugs)

 

   

Family: Rhopalidae

 

 
 

Pentatomoidea

 
   

Family: Urostylidae

 

 
   

Family: Plataspididae

 

 
   

Family: Thyreocoridae

 

 
   

Family: Megarididae

 

 
   

Family: Canopidae

 

 
   

Family: Phloeidae

 

 
   

Family: Thaumastellidae

 

 
   

Family: Cydnidae

 

 
   

Family: Acanthosomatidae

 

 
   

Family: Lestoniidae

 

 
   

Family: Tessaratomidae

 

 
   

Family: Scutelleridae (shield-backed bugs)

 

   

Family: Dinidoridae

 

 
   

Family: Pentatomidae (stink bugs)

 

 

References

  • Jacobs, D.H. 1985. Heteroptera. In: Insects of Southern Africa (Eds C.H. Scholtz & E. Holm). Butterworths, Durban, p. 117-152.

 


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