I found a dying bug on the picnic table outdoors and didn’t think much about it. Then I found another that looked just the same inside the cabin climbing up the kitchen window. He was too high up for me to reach, but the next morning there he was sitting in the sink. I took him out on a paper towel and deposited him on the front deck to photograph. Here’s what I discovered.
Based on the photographs in Insects of the Pacific Northwest, he appears to be a Western Conifer Seed Bug. The information indicates that they are rare to see because they spend their lives living up at the top of confer trees feeding on the seeds in pinecones.
The Western Conifer Seed Bug (Leptoglossus occidentalis) is a member of the Squash Bug family (family Coreidae). They are brown with yellow or white wings. My specimen opened his wings while I carried him outdoors and they were white with darker lines through them. The tibia of the hind legs are flattened and leaf-like. The body is medium sized at 17 millimetres.
Both the adults and nymphs feed on conifer cones. I guess I was really lucky to make this discovery. I’m not sure how the two made it down from the trees on the cliff to my cabin, maybe it was a recent wind that sent them far away from their cozy treetop homes. -- Margy
Reference: Insects of the Pacific Northwest (Timber Press Field Guide, 2006) by Peter Haggard and Judy Haggard, and PennState College of Agricultural Sciences Department of Entomology "Insect Advice from Extension: Fact Sheet" (online).