group of insects are Shieldbugs, named after their
heraldic shield-like shape and belonging to the
order Hemiptera. They frequent
most types of vegetation and although most feed on their
foliage and berries etc, some species are carnivorous.
Shieldbugs go through several stages of growth called
nymphs, which are as frequently found as the adults and a
few species exhibit brood care. Shieldbugs are also
fairly regular visitors to MV moth traps.
The Hawthorn Shieldbug is a common
species, generally tending to be found on shrubby plants
and trees, rather than low vegetation. The photographs
below show a range of colourations. The top two were
taken at Sherwood Forest CP in September 2010, with the
middle two taken at New Ollerton in early November 2010,
showing the pre-hibernation colours of the adult.