assassin bug

noun

Definition of assassin bug

: any of a family (Reduviidae) of bugs that are usually predatory on insects though some (such as a kissing bug) suck the blood of mammals

called also reduviid

Illustration of assassin bug

Illustration of assassin bug

Examples of assassin bug in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Known as an assassin bug, Sycanus uses its mouthpart to stab its insect prey, including the fire caterpillar, one of the most important pests of oil palm trees. Dyna Rochmyaningsih, Science | AAAS, 11 July 2019 Indiana has its fair share of scary pests, ranging from wasps, assassin bugs and stink bugs to more harmful critters, such as poisonous spiders. Andrew Clark, Indianapolis Star, 10 Oct. 2018 The bedroom reeks pleasantly of timbers, mildew, brick; the kitchen at night races with mice and assassin bugs; and in the pasture the cows moan and ruminate and gather under the shade of the trees to escape the withering sun. Christopher Ketcham, Harper's magazine, 24 June 2019 The assassin bug wears its victims' corpses on its back, where the cadavers act as both shield and camouflage. National Geographic, 23 June 2018 The assassin bug's deadly proboscis is both sword and siphon. smithsonianmag.com, 30 Sep. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'assassin bug.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of assassin bug

1890, in the meaning defined above

Buying Guide

Our team at The Usage has selected the best bug spray of 2021.

Learn More About assassin bug

Time Traveler for assassin bug

Time Traveler

The first known use of assassin bug was in 1890

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near assassin bug

assassination

assassin bug

assassin fly

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for assassin bug

Cite this Entry

“Assassin bug.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/assassin%20bug. Accessed 2 Dec. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for assassin bug

assassin bug

noun
as·​sas·​sin bug | \ ə-ˈsas-ᵊn- How to pronounce assassin bug (audio) \

Medical Definition of assassin bug

: any bug of the family Reduviidae — compare conenose

More from Merriam-Webster on assassin bug

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about assassin bug

WORD OF THE DAY

Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!