Status in the Wild:
White-Eyed Assassin Bugs are named after their swift and stealthy attack. They sneak up on their prey and use their piercing mouthparts, shaped into a beak, to inject a variety of digestive enzymes. The white eye-like spots on their wings give them their common name and warn enemies of its painful bite.
These insects are found in the drier regions of Southern Africa, hiding in groups under logs, rocks and peeling bark. They are night feeders, preying on soft-bodied insects and occasionally vertebrate blood. Working together as a team, White-Eyed Assassin Bugs can overpower prey that is much larger than a single assassin bug. Their bite is insignificant to humans, but still more uncomfortable than a bee sting.
You can see White-Eyed Assassin Bugs in the Zoo’s Creepy Crawlers exhibit.