Species: Firebug (Pyrrhocoris apterus)

Family: Red bugs (PYRRHOCORIDAE)

Category: Insects (Other)

Location: One Sighting

A. Insects (Other)

More extensive information on insects can be found in a separate blog post.


The Pyrrhocoridae family of insects consists of perhaps 300 species. The majority are red. They are found world-wide.

Most species of the family feed on fruit seeds, although rotting debris is usually sufficient.

C. Firebug (Pyrrhocoris apterus)

The Firebug (Pyrrhocoris apterus) has only relatively recently been found in Britain, where it is now established. They are between 8 and 10 millimetres in length. In Britain, they generally do not develop wings long enough to support flight. They often form dense congregations in spring prior to mating.

They are often associated with Tree Mallows and Lime trees, on whose seeds they feed.



Firebugs often form dense congregations in spring prior to mating, although their infrequent presence in Britain will go some way to explaining solitary individuals here.

(Photo credit: Darren Harris.)