Dock Leaf Bug

Coreus marginatus

Dock Bug (Coreus marginatus)

Sometimes called the ‘Brown Squash Bug’, ‘Squash Bug’ or Dock Bug’, this is a large brownish shield bug with rounded shoulders and orange to peach coloured striped hard wing base. It also has two tiny horns between its dark-tipped antennae. Length 12 to 15mm.

Dock Bug (Coreus marginatus)

When threatened this bug releases an obnoxious chemical in defence which can turn the skin brown if contact is made. It can be very hard to wash off and remain this way for many days. With this reference in mind, it is sometimes known as a ‘Stink Bug’. It hibernates in all life stages. It feeds mainly on the fruits and seeds of dock (rumex), and their relatives (Polygonaceae). It can also be a pest to rose buds and soft fruits, especially squash (Cucurbita).

Dock Bug (Coreus marginatus)

Mostly observed in spring and autumn where they congregate before they hibernate. It is found in many habitats, including woodland verges, hedgerows, the edge of cultivated fields, meadows, wasteland and gardens. A widespread and common species found all over Europe and parts of North America. Common and widespread in southern Britain.

Photographs of Dock Bug (Coreus marginatus) taken May 2014, local field margin, Staffordshire. © Pete Hillman 2014. Camera used Nikon D3200, with Sigma 105mm macro lens.

3 thoughts on “Dock Leaf Bug

  1. I wondered what these guys are called. Every year (spring and autumn, I think), they make their way inside the house. You definitely don’t want to squash them, or even leave their remains around post-squash, because of the smell! I try to shoo them back outside intact, hoping to avoid getting a dose of their “perfume”.

    Liked by 1 person

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