Spilostethus pandurus  (Scopoli, 1763)
Taxonomical Classification:  Animalia / Arthropoda / Insecta / Heteroptera / Lygaeidae
Soldier Bug     Suldat
Further Information:
A common insect often found solitary on wild plants or on the ground in vegetated areas. It is 12-15mm long and easily spotted due to its conspicuous red/black colour pattern. This vivid colouration warns predators of its unpalatability; it defends itself by secreting pungent odours. It can be found scurrying along the ground in many habitats across the Maltese Islands. Feeds on various plants, namely those in the dogbane family but also oleander.

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