Leaf-footed pine seed bug

Editor’s note: This article is from the archives of the MSU Crop Advisory Team Alerts. Check the label of any pesticide referenced to ensure your use is included.      

In visiting a farm this week I had the opportunity to see large numbers of leaf-footed pine seed bug on the cones of balsam fir. The leaf-footed pine seed bug feeds on the developing cones and seeds of several species of conifers. The feeding damage from heavy infestations reduces seed production, but does not harm the tree. (see photo)

The adult leaf-footed pine seed bug is similar in shape and appearance to boxelder and squash bugs. The insect is 3/4 inches long and has a white zigzag line on the forward portion of its back. The most distinguishing characteristic of the adult is the hind leg; which is wide and flat.

The only problem with these bugs is that they like to overwinter in your home. They do not reproduce in the house or cause damage but can be a nuisance. When you find them in your home, destroy them or vacuum them up.

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