Shield bugs often have brightly decorated wing cases on their backs and it was with great joy that I recently encountered a rather aptly named Harlequin Bug, whilst rambling on the hills above San Isidro. I spotted the creature resting on some leaves and was glad I had my camera with me. I was also glad I hadn't trodden on the little fellow. With its red colouration this dandy of the insect world would surely win any bug fashion show.
True bugs also have modified mouthparts that they use to pierce things and suck up the juices inside. Some feed on plant juices and are pests, while others like the Bed Bug feed on us and so we can definitely call them pests too.
Another group, known as the Homoptera, includes the aphids, whiteflies, leafhoppers, cicadas, and scale insects. These Homoptera have the rather dubious distinction of being probably some of the most destructive insects in the world. Certainly here in Tenerife, gardens are plagued with whitefly. Besides killing the plants the horrible little things fly up at you in a cloud like a mini snowstorm in reverse.
I may have a problem with whitefly but in general I like bugs. I will rescue them too. If I see a flying insect trapped in a room I will guide the poor creature to an open window. I take delight in thinking that they will find their way home, and in some strange sort of karma, that my good turn will be returned.
When I was little boy I delighted in popping beetles and caterpillars and other six-legged small creatures into a jar or matchbox and taking them home to keep as pets and to identify. Look what I've found I would tell my parents and my dad would help me find out the names from a book.