two-spotted grass bug

(Stenotus binotatus)

Conservation Status
two-spotted grass bug
Photo by Alfredo Colon
  IUCN Red List

not listed


not listed


not listed


Two-spotted grass bug is a soft-bodied, colorful, plant bug. It is small for a true bug (suborder Heteroptera) but fairly large for a plant bug (family Miridae). It is native to Europe and was introduced into North America, where it is now widespread. It is uncommon in Minnesota. It is considered a minor agricultural pest, attacking several cereal crops, especially wheat.

The head is shorter than the first segment of the thorax (prothorax) and much shorter than the antennae. It is black in front and at the back, yellow or yellowish-green at the top. The light area at the top usually extends to the edges of the compound eyes and often extends in a narrow strip to the back of the head. There are two large compound eyes and no simple eyes (ocelli). The mouth parts take the form of a long, 4-segmented beak that projects downward and is optimized for piercing and sucking. The antennae are long and yellow tinged with black.

The body is soft, ¼ to 5 16 long, elongated, and more or less parallel along the sides.

The upper thoracic shield (pronotum) yellow at the sides and yellow or greenish-yellow on top. It has two large, elongated, oval spots that extend from near the front (anterior) margin to the rear (posterior) margin.

There are two pairs of wings. They are held flat over the body when at rest. They are longer than and completely cover the body. The front wings (hemelytra) are longer than the hind wings. The front wings (hemelytra) are longer than the hind wings. The exoskeletal plate between the wing bases (scutellum) is large, triangular, bright yellow or greenish-yellow with no black markings. The hemelytra have a thickened, leathery part at the base and a thin membranous part at the tip with a clear dividing line between the two. The thickened part is comprised of the narrow area (clavus) behind the scutellum when the wings are closed and the broad marginal area (corium). At the end of the corium there is a small but distinct triangular area (cuneus). Each hemelytron has three oblique streaks, two black and the third blackish. The lower (distal) black streak extends toward the inner margin of the cuneus. As the insect ages, the black marks become darker and larger, merging into a single large black spot. The cuneus) is always yellow with no black markings. The membranous tip is black or blackish-brown with yellow veins. It has two closed cells. The hind wing is completely thin and membranous.

The legs are long and delicate. The third (femur) and fourth (tibia) segment of each leg is yellow. The end part that corresponds to the foot (tarsus) is black and has three segments.

The female is similar to the male but is greenish-yellow and has and the black markings are paler and much less extensive.




Total Length: ¼ to 5 16


Similar Species


Fields, meadows




Mid-June to mid-August






Life Cycle




Nymph Food


Inflorescence of various grasses, especially timothy


Adult Food


Inflorescence of various grasses, especially timothy


Distribution Map



24, 27, 29, 30, 82.




Widespread in North America. Not common in Minnesota.



Hemiptera (true bugs, hoppers, aphids, and allies)  


Heteroptera (true bugs)  


Cimicomorpha (cimicomorph bugs)  




Miridae (plant bugs)  




  Genus Stenotus  



Stenotus sareptanus


Common Names


slender crop mirid

timothy plant bug

two-spotted grass bug










The triangular, hardened, horn-like tip of the forewing of a plant bug (family Miridae).



The forewing of true bugs (Order Hemiptera), thickened at the base and membranous at the tip. Plural: hemelytra.



On insects and arachnids, the third, largest, most robust segment of the leg, coming immediately before the tibia. On humans, the thigh bone.



Simple eye; an eye with a single lens. Plural: ocelli.



The saddle-shaped, exoskeletal plate on the upper side of the first segment of the thorax of an insect.



The first (forward) segment of the thorax on an insect, bearing the first pair of legs but not wings.



The exoskeletal plate covering the rearward (posterior) part of the middle segment of the thorax in some insects. In Coleoptera, Hemiptera, and Homoptera, the dorsal, often triangular plate behind the pronotum and between the bases of the front wings.



The last two to five subdivisions of an insect’s leg, attached to the tibia; the foot. Plural: tarsi.



The fourth segment of an insect leg, after the femur and before the tarsus (foot).






Visitor Photos

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Rene Blaeser


It was on my dahlia bloom

    two-spotted grass bug      

Alfredo Colon

    two-spotted grass bug   two-spotted grass bug  





Two-spotted Grass Bug (Stenotus binotatus)
Andree Reno Sanborn
  Two-spotted Grass Bug (Stenotus binotatus)  



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Other Videos
  Wanze Stenotus binotatus Close up movies
Chrigu wälti

Published on Nov 29, 2012

Wanze Stenotus binotatus




Visitor Sightings

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Simply email us at
Be sure to include a location.
  Rene Blaeser

Location: St. Michael, MN

It was on my dahlia bloom

two-spotted grass bug  
  Alfredo Colon

Location: Woodbury, MN

two-spotted grass bug  
  Alfredo Colon

Location: Woodbury, MN

two-spotted grass bug  






Created 10/26/2018

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