What type of bug will emerge from this? #608718
Asked December 18, 2019, 9:37 AM EST
I have a number of these in my blueberry bushes and need to know if I need to remove them as an organic pest control measure.
Caroline County Maryland
This looks like the egg case (ootheca) of a mantis - particularly the native Carolina Mantis (Stagmomantis carolina). Mantids attach their egg cases to plant stems to overwinter; their stiff foam-like insulating outer layer protects them from the harsh winter weather and some predators. There are various photos of adults and nymphs on Maryland Biodiversity's page: https://www.marylandbiodiversity.com/viewSpecies.php?species=6393, including a picture of an egg case most of the way down the page. While it's difficult to be sure, this egg case looks like it is an older one that hatched a previous spring. There is no harm in leaving it, however, in case it has yet to hatch this coming year. Sometimes predators will consume the eggs before they hatch; densely populated nymphs can eat each other as well, though often they disperse. Adult mantids are smaller and more mottled in coloration than our introduced species from Europe and Asia and are a welcome native predator to control pest insects. The good news is mantids are one of your organic pest control measures!