Eastern Blood-sucking Conenose

Triatoma sanguisuga

UF/IFAS

The Eastern Blood-sucking Conenose lives up to its name. It is about 3/4 of an inch long. Its body is dark brown or black, with six orange spots on each side of its abdomen. It has a long head, which is cone-shaped with a long mouthpart, called a proboscis. This insect uses its proboscis to suck blood.

The conenose is found hiding in cracks or crevices, underneath bark, in tree holes, and in animal nests. They drink blood from mammals, such as rodents, opossums, racoons, dogs, cats, and people. It usually feeds on sleeping animals since it takes about 20 minutes to fill up.

Drees, Texas A&M University Department of Entomology

Female Eastern Blood-sucking Conenoses lay eggs after they feed. Eggs are small, white, and oval-shaped. These insects do not have a pupa (resting) stage, so their larvae are called nymphs. Conenose nymphs grow slowly and can take up to two years to become an adult. A nymph is pictured above.

Adult Eastern Blood-sucking Conenoses can fly, but are not very good at it. At night, they are attracted to lights, and they will often enter homes. Conenoses that have just fed cannot get off the ground to fly.

Eastern Blood-sucking Conenoses are eaten by most animals that prey on insects, such as birds and amphibians.

Additional Media

Description
Type
Credit
Eastern Blood-sucking Conenose's Head Under a Microscope
Link to Image
Uglybug.org

Relationships in Nature:

PREY
PREDATORS
SHELTER
OTHER

Raccoon

Bullfrog

Black Oak

Virginia Opposum H

Virginia Opposum

American Toad

American Sycamore

Raccoon H

Meadow Vole

Red-backed Salamander

Virginia Pine

Meadow Vole H

Eastern Gray Squirrel

Wood Frog

Eastern White Pine

Eastern Gray Squirrel H

Least Shrew

Pileated Woodpecker

Bracken Fern

Least Shrew H

Human

Least Shrew

Poison Ivy

Red Fox H

Red Fox

Wild Turkey

Virginia Creeper

Human H

White-tailed Deer

Five-lined Skink

Red Clover

White-tailed Deer H

Eastern Cottontail

Rabid Wolf Spider

Wild Grape

Eastern Cottontail H

Woodchuck

Goldenrod Spider

Greenbrier

Woodchuck H

Northern Cardinal

Witch Hazel

Big Brown Bat

Pokeweed

Daring Jumping Spider

Common Ragweed

Red-winged Blackbird

Running Cedar

American Robin

Bushy Aster

Garden Centipede

British Soldiers

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Chinese Mantid

Carolina Chickadee

Relationship to Humans:

Eastern Blood-sucking Conenoses will prey on humans, especially when homes are close to wooded areas. Their bite is usually painless, but some people have an allergic reaction which causes a great deal of discomfort. Pets can be attacked also.

Conenoses are known to carry parasites and diseases, but this is more of a problem in other parts of the world.

SCIENTIFIC CLASSIFICATION

KINGDOM
Animal
PHYLUM
Arthropod
CLASS
Insect
ORDER
Hemiptera
FAMILY
Reduviidae
GENUS
Triatoma
SPECIES
Triatoma sanguisuga

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