Leaf Footed Bug








Leptoglossus australis

Passionvine bug, Citron bug, Squash bug


Leaf-footed bugs have a structure on their hind legs that looks like a leaf. In some species this can be quite big and elaborate, and can also be very colourful. The nymphs look a lot like assassin bug nymphs. But as they grow the ‘leaf’ becomes more prominent. This almost black bug has a redish-orange or yellow band across its shoulders and the same coloured spots on the underside of its body. One reference says that L. australis is the former name of L.gonagra but in other references they are listed as two different species.

Adult size: 18 mm

Out and about

Adults emerge in spring and are most numerous in the summer as many generations are around at same time. Leaf- footed bugs are found worldwide particularly in the tropics and subtropics of Asia, Africa, the Americas and Oceania. In Australia it is present in the northern regions. Leptoglossus australis is widespread throughout Asia and Oceania regions.

Reproduction and Life cycle

After emerging in spring, the female lays about 16 brown cylindrical-shaped eggs in a single row end to end on the leaves and stems of plants. She can lay around 60 eggs during her lifespan. The nymphs hatch about a week later and will moult 5 times before reaching adulthood. The complete lifecycle takes roughly nine weeks. The adults have a relative long life span so many generations can be around at the same time.

To deter

To control

Spray with: - garlic and chilli to deter - pyrethrum - neem oil, early morning or late evening

Plants to repel

Plants to attract


Assassin bugs / Birds / Spiders Parasitoid wasp (kill the eggs) Tachinid flies (lay eggs on larger nymphs and adults)
Why they are a Pest
Leaf-footed bugs pierce and suck the soft young pods of plants, which then become dry and deformed as they harden. They will also feed on flowers and immature fruit causing blemishes on the fruit which become more pronounces as the fruit develops. They are a particular problem on beans, and passionfruit as well as citrus, cucurbits (melons and cucumbers), cashew, cacao, coffee, avocado, beans and pomegranate.