I noticed two or three small, black insects tonight while sitting in my lawn, which is presumably where they're coming from. It seems to have wings, and I think it has a sharp thing which resembles a stinger. It's a little black speck to my eyes, and this picture was maxing out the cell phone camera I had at the moment.

The grass doesn't show any obvious signs of stress; it's a nice green color, but I'm still concerned that this insect might damage my lawn. I'm in the Northwest USA. Three questions:

  1. What is this insect?
  2. Why is it in my lawn?
  3. How can I kill them all?

The picture was taken while on my leg, not in the lawn. enter image description here

  • Undo, I re-worded much of your question to make it ask how to rid yourself of a lawn pest. If this is truly a question about keeping something from biting you, I'd appreciate you rolling it back. It would only be on-topic if your genuine concern was your lawn. Thanks! Jul 28, 2016 at 23:23
  • Looks great @Sue, thank you. My lawn / trees are a secondary (but still real) concern.
    – user6930
    Jul 28, 2016 at 23:40

1 Answer 1


That looks like a Minute Pirate Bug (Hemiptera Anthocoridae) to me. They predatory and feed on aphids, spider mites and thrips, so can be beneficial.

If you want them gone, it may be better to check to see if their food source is abundant in your garden, and treat that instead!

  • 1
    Most insects are beneficial, that means they take care of the not so beneficial insects. To kill insects willynilly is to ensure one will always have more problems until they revive the community of insects. Killing insects is just crazy. This little beetle is a blessing in any garden! As are so many insects...again there are very very few insects that need control by us humans.
    – stormy
    Jul 29, 2016 at 0:00

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