Coreid Bugs
Wingless Coreid

Crusader Bug - Mictis profana

Family Coreidae

This page contains pictures and information about Crusader Bugs that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia. This bug is also known as Holy Cross Bug.

Male, body length 25mm
This bug is dark brown in colour and with a diagonal pale-yellow cross on its back like the Crusader's shield. Its hind legs are thick and strong. 
During the day time we easily found many of them feeding on host plants, just do not care if there were any predators. The bugs live on different kinds of shrubs and trees. They are common in Brisbane bushes and backyards wherever there are their host plants.


Males and females are the same size and looked about the same, except males have stronger and spiny hind legs. 
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The bugs are slow motion but they do fly occasionally. We saw once there were some Tent Spiders web above their feeding plants and some Crusader Bugs got caught in the spider web.


The following pictures show the Crusader Bug nymph in different stages. All can be found on the same host plants at the same time in mid summer. The nymphs feed on the same plant as their adults. 
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Eggs                                                                    1st instars, body length 5mm 
Their eggs are brown in colour look similar to those in above photo, although we are exactly sure if those in the photo are the eggs of  Crusader Bug. 
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2nd instars, body length 10mm                                                                                                          2nd and last instars
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3rd instars, body length 15 mm 
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4th instars,  body length 20mm
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5th (last) instars, length 25mm 

Sucking Mouth and Host Plants

Member in tribe Mictini are believed to feed mostly on legumes, plants in the family Fabaceae, include the new shots and the fruits. 
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Easter Cassia (Senna pendula, weeds)                Calliandra sp.
The bugs feed on Acacia, Cassia and some other garden plants. They prefer new shoots and pierce plants with their sucking mouthparts.
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In the above photos notice its sucking mouth part and its damages to the plant. The plant tip after the bug's mouth is wilted. Also notice the small hole above its middle pair of legs. Strong smell will come out from there as a deterrent to predators.
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1. Crusader bug, Mictis profana (Fabricius) (Hemiptera: Coreidae) - www.padil.gov.au, 2007.
2. Crusader Bug Fact File - Wildlife of Sydney, Australian Museum online, 2008.
3. Wild Plants of Greater Brisbane -  Queensland Museum, 2003, p345, Easter Cassia Senna pendula
4. Studies on the biology, immature stages, and relative growth of some Australian bugs of the superfamily Coreoidea (Hemiptera: Heteroptera) - Kumar, R. 1966, Australian Journal of Zoology 14: 895-991 [908].
5. The Australian distribution of Mictis profana (F.) (Hemiptera: Coreidae) and its life cycle on Mimosa pigra L - Flanagan, G.J. 1994. Journal of the Australian Entomological Society 33: 111-114. 

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Last updated: September 04, 2010.