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Bugs on zucchinis, can't identify

 
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I've started my first garden this year. Besides my peas getting eaten, it's doing ok. Today when tending I noticed a cluster of bugs on my zucchini. No hits online for common pests. Can you identify these for me please?

PS. This garden is in southern NH.
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pollinator
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They are actually called squash bugs. They can build up huge populations. They’ll move into your melons after they’re done with the squash. I don’t know what to do about them. My chickens wouldn’t eat them. I pretty much quit growing zuchini because of them.  I’m trying some squash varieties that are more resistant this year.
 
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I've read about the weird, wretched way that BT was discovered: somebody picked the caterpiggles off a plant they liked, and drowned and rotted them in water--then pureed it, and sprayed it back on the living. They didn't know of course that the bacteria Thuringensis was alive in the syrum they had created, but the caterpiggles sure weren't fond of it.

But the idea's got merrit, by golly.

Would you eat a squash that was covered in pureed rotten humans?
 
Christopher Hutchins
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Ken W Wilson wrote:They are actually called squash bugs. They can build up huge populations. They’ll move into your melons after they’re done with the squash. I don’t know what to do about them. My chickens wouldn’t eat them. I pretty much quit growing zuchini because of them.  I’m trying some squash varieties that are more resistant this year.



They don't have the flat stink-bug/connifer beatle shape that the squash bug pictures I find online have though. Do you have a more specific name these ones might be called? I haven't seen any damage on the squash (yet).
 
Christopher Hutchins
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Michael Sohocki wrote:I've read about the weird, wretched way that BT was discovered: somebody picked the caterpiggles off a plant they liked, and drowned and rotted them in water--then pureed it, and sprayed it back on the living. They didn't know of course that the bacteria Thuringensis was alive in the syrum they had created, but the caterpiggles sure weren't fond of it.

But the idea's got merrit, by golly.

Would you eat a squash that was covered in pureed rotten humans?



I suppose I wouldn't, but it could very well be mental vs. my stomach exploding which apparently BT does. Having just read about this pesticide for the first time, it seems to be caterpillar-specific. Is this your way of saying that BT should be effective against these guys? Or if I'd been proactive, I wouldn't have them?
 
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They don't look like squash bugs to me...more like a leaf footed bug maybe?

The larger one on the left has a curved body that makes me think of an assassin bug...that would be a keeper IF it is one.

BT won't work for squash bugs and is indiscriminate in the caterpillars it kills so I never use it.

Squash bug young are really distinctive...pale grey and soft bodied with black legs.  
 
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Those are assassin bugs, both an adult and probably her newly hatched brood. They will eat any squash beetles that they find, good critter in my book.
 
Christopher Hutchins
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:Those are assassin bugs, both an adult and probably her newly hatched brood. They will eat any squash beetles that they find, good critter in my book.



That's a shame! I read a little about assassin bugs this morning, and thought I'd identified these guys as look alikes. The proboscis looked like it was meant for veggies, so this morning while tending I was squishing. Hopefully I didn't wipe them out.
 
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Bryant RedHawk wrote:Those are assassin bugs, both an adult and probably her newly hatched brood. They will eat any squash beetles that they find, good critter in my book.




I went out this morning, with my soapy water, after reading this thread. Tada!!! My first ever seen Assassins!


Ninja Assassins! Yay! Now, I wanna keep 'em around, so... my neem oil should not be used near them. Right?
 
Michael Sohocki
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Dear Christopher,

I didn't mean anything like you hadn't done your homework, I'm sorry.

No, my suggestion was only half serious. If there's a bug giving you problems, it's kind of a compelling idea to catch a handful of the buggers, and make a bug spray out of them. The only evidence I had of this working is BT, and we didn't know the bug at the time--so I figured, I dunno....why not take a whack at it, you know?
 
Christopher Hutchins
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Joylynn Hardesty wrote:

Bryant RedHawk wrote:Those are assassin bugs, both an adult and probably her newly hatched brood. They will eat any squash beetles that they find, good critter in my book.




I went out this morning, with my soapy water, after reading this thread. Tada!!! My first ever seen Assassins!


Ninja Assassins! Yay! Now, I wanna keep 'em around, so... my neem oil should not be used near them. Right?



I'm starting to think that I was right in my guess that these are assassin look alikes. They don't look like they're spreading out for the hunt or trying to find something too hunt. They seem very happy to just congregate on any juicy bit of plant - zucchini, summer squash, cucumber, or peas.
 
Judith Browning
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Christopher Hutchins wrote:

Joylynn Hardesty wrote:

Bryant RedHawk wrote:Those are assassin bugs, both an adult and probably her newly hatched brood. They will eat any squash beetles that they find, good critter in my book.




I went out this morning, with my soapy water, after reading this thread. Tada!!! My first ever seen Assassins!


Ninja Assassins! Yay! Now, I wanna keep 'em around, so... my neem oil should not be used near them. Right?



I'm starting to think that I was right in my guess that these are assassin look alikes. They don't look like they're spreading out for the hunt or trying to find something too hunt. They seem very happy to just congregate on any juicy bit of plant - zucchini, summer squash, cucumber, or peas.



Have you been able to get a look at their back legs to rule out a 'leaf footed' bug?  Do they all have a curve to their body like some in your photo?

This is why I tend to leave all bugs in my gardens and yard alone anymore and let them work out the balance without my intervention.  
 
Ken W Wilson
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Can you get a closer picture?

 
Christopher Hutchins
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Judith Browning wrote:

Christopher Hutchins wrote:

Joylynn Hardesty wrote:

Bryant RedHawk wrote:Those are assassin bugs, both an adult and probably her newly hatched brood. They will eat any squash beetles that they find, good critter in my book.




I went out this morning, with my soapy water, after reading this thread. Tada!!! My first ever seen Assassins!


Ninja Assassins! Yay! Now, I wanna keep 'em around, so... my neem oil should not be used near them. Right?



I'm starting to think that I was right in my guess that these are assassin look alikes. They don't look like they're spreading out for the hunt or trying to find something too hunt. They seem very happy to just congregate on any juicy bit of plant - zucchini, summer squash, cucumber, or peas.



Have you been able to get a look at their back legs to rule out a 'leaf footed' bug?  Do they all have a curve to their body like some in your photo?

This is why I tend to leave all bugs in my gardens and yard alone anymore and let them work out the balance without my intervention.  



I can definitely try and get some closer pictures, but they are skittish fellows. To anyone still following this puny thread I'm still squishing ad nauseum. I simply feel like the way the congregate in the dozens on tasty vegetation is the answer. But I'll try and snag some for macro photography and post up. I'd feel bad if they were good hunters, but I feel like they'd go to seek more gooder hunting grounds if they were. It's still best if I truly know. I plan on next year adding more, so I must educate.
 
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Ken W Wilson wrote:They are actually called squash bugs. They can build up huge populations. They’ll move into your melons after they’re done with the squash. I don’t know what to do about them. My chickens wouldn’t eat them. I pretty much quit growing zuchini because of them.  I’m trying some squash varieties that are more resistant this year.



first post was correct.  look like immature squash bugs to me, of some different variety.
 
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I discovered squash bugs recently. And eggs.

We ordered some 70% Neem oil to take care of the problem. Package does not say to mix with anything but plain water. 2 oz/gal.

I did see a youtube video about a guy who had a severe infestation of them and he simply used a 2 gal sprayer with generic type dish soap of the kind that was used for environmental cleanup from the Exxon Valdez spill, and water in it and kept spraying the plants.
The bugs did die pretty quickly but he had to keep spraying repeatedly over the course of a few hours to days.

I read that Castile soap is a plus for dealing with them.

Big question is this: will either of those harm the plant, soil, or the beneficial bacteria/fungus?

Neem oil package does say to let it dry and avoid the flowers to protect the honeybees. It says spray very early mornings or late afternoon/evening.
It also says to wear protective clothing. What the heck? For something non toxic you're supposed to wear protective clothing?

Would hate to harm the plant or worse - my garden soil.

 
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I was out vacuuming them off my plants today. That works well. More than one session is needed as they scamper away pretty quick, but it is effective.
 
Kai Walker
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Can't find an extension cord long enough to get to my garden lol

I trimmed back some of the leaves and checked for open flowers. None were open.
So I mixed neem oil exactly as the rate the directions indicated (rate was 2 oz per gal).
I had a 1/2 gal sprayer so used 1 ounce.
Bugs didn't like it but it did not kill on contact.

Also,
Just inspected my garden again a bit ago and was dive bombed by a big Bald Eagle!
Not just once but several times!
Not sure why either.
It passed within a couple feet of my head (I was ducking).
I looked it straight on as it was diving towards me.
When it got to about 10 feet from me I ducked and could feel the wind from it's flapping wings.

Exhilarating but at the same time scary too.

Just strange. I am far too big for it to want to attack me and there is no nest around that I can see.
 
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