Name that bug!
April 2, 2013 1:38 PM   Subscribe

Can you help me figure out what these small, black-and-red winged bugs in my house are, and whether they are something I should be concerned about?

Three times in the last few months, I've found a very small, winged, black and red insect in my house. Pictures: 1, 2, 3 (for scale). One of the three was last fall (no later than November) and in the kitchen; the other two were last month and this morning, in the bathroom (which is directly above the kitchen, so same area of the house).

The bug is tiny -- a few millimeters long, at most -- and I recall that the one in the fall flew a short distance but was not particularly speedy. The other two did not fly, though they seem to have wings. All three were very easy to corner and crush. When crushed, they leave a red stain.

Most Google searches result in hits for boxelder bugs, but these guys are way too small to be boxelder bugs. Other possibles are milkweed bugs, but we don't have any milkweed in our area (that I know of).

Location is the Maryland suburbs of DC.
posted by devinemissk to Home & Garden (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You can submit an ID request at I've done this before and gotten a response fairly quickly (within a day or two).
posted by snowmentality at 1:50 PM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

At this time of year, they might be boxelder or milkweed bug nymphs. Whatever the case, they probably won't do much damage--it's likely that they got in through some opening somewhere and are just seeking shelter. I'd capture them if possible and release them, but bug spray would probably do the trick, too.
posted by tully_monster at 1:51 PM on April 2, 2013

Baby checkered beetle?
posted by blurker at 1:53 PM on April 2, 2013

Best answer: It's a soft-winged flower beetle. That one was found in Maryland, too. More pictures.
posted by ancient star at 1:56 PM on April 2, 2013 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Answered! Thanks, ancient star -- I missed that one when I trolled through BugGuide. (And whew, seems like I don't need to be worried about this particular intruder.)
posted by devinemissk at 3:10 PM on April 2, 2013

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