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Scolopostethus decoratus
Family: Lygaeidae

A difficult genus including some common species; all have one large and several small spines on the front femur. The sides of the pronotum are keeled and have a large and obvious pale spot just behind the middle. Underside characters are important in most species and specimens should be collected for reliable identification.

S. decoratus is one of the more easily recognised species. The antennae are entirely black with the exception of the base of the 2nd segment. The bug is almost always macropterous.

This species is always associated with heather and is found commonly on heathland throughout the UK.

Compare: S. affinis, S. thomsoni

Adult: All year
Length 3.5-4.0 mm
Scolopostethus decoratus
Adult: Surrey (August 2008) ©Tristan Bantock

Scolopostethus decoratus Scolopostethus decoratus nymph
Adult: Surrey (August 2008) ©Tristan Bantock Adult: Dorset (August 2008) ©Mark Dunkling

Scolopostethus decoratus nymph Scolopostethus decoratus nymph
Nymph: east London (August 2008) ©Tristan Bantock

Nymph: Dorset (August 2008) ©Mark Dunkling