Assassin Bugs

Family Reduviidae

There are more than 300 species of Australian assassin bugs in the Family Reduviidae. All of our species are predators with elongated heads and a curved proboscis beneath.

Assassin bugs use their proboscis to impale prey (insects and spiders) and inject digestive enzymes that liquefy the body tissues. The bug then sucks up the juices through the proboscis, which acts like a straw.

Assassin bugs sometimes bite humans when provoked, for example when they become entangled in clothing. When they bite the same enzymes cause intense pain, but the effects are usually localised and temporary.

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