Can anyone identify this colony of what appear to be beetles I found on a dill seed?

Here is my best description of the insects:

  • nearly spherical
  • long antennae with 4 articulated segments - last segment is larger than the others
  • apparently no wings or wing covers
  • black with six white marks on abdomen:
    • Two large marks just behind the thorax half way between the dorsal center and edge of the abdomen
    • Two smaller pairs of marks behind the first pair arranged near the dorsal center of the abdomen
  • insects are clustered around what appear to be eggs on the dill seed
  • Eggs are cylindrical and appear to be arranged in a honeycomb pattern
  • There are two more dill seeds with what appear to be hatched eggs

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  • I just ran across a stinkbug life-cycle article in a kids' book and it reminded me of these guys. This could be a stinkbug or shield bug. Apparently the hatchlings need to stick around for a while because they rely on a bacterial culture the mother leaves with the eggs. This Wikipedia article has some stinkbug hatchling pictures: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brown_marmorated_stink_bug
    – Jon Hulka
    Jan 12, 2017 at 23:05

1 Answer 1


This is some sort of true bug, beetles go through complete metamorphosis, and would hatch into a wormlike larvae... many true bugs are horrible pests and spread diseases, especially to squash/gourd/pumpkin/melons. depending on where you live, this could be a shield bug or a leaf footed bug or similar.

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