Red Insects – On Plants in Spring (wheel bug vs leaf-footed bug)
Each spring I get pictures of clusters of small red insects on plants or surfaces near a garden.
The two most likely suspects are wheel bug nymphs and leaf-footed bug nymphs.
But wheel bugs are beneficial insects and leaf-footed bugs feed on tomatoes, squash and okra, right?
How to tell them apart?
In general, leaf-footed bug nymph bodies are all red while wheel bug nymphs have a red abdomen and a black head and thorax.
Leaf-footed bugs should be eliminated before they become adults. Insecticidal soap will do the job just fine.