Sloe bugs on stinking hellebore

I went back to Brockadale today looking for more wildflowers and came across one of the locally scarce stinking hellebore pants. Although well past its flowering period, it was easily recognisable but the amazing thing was that it was totally covered in brightly coloured shield bugs! I have identified these as sloe bug (also known as hairy shield bug) and there must have been over 60 on the one plant. Some were mating, some were sparring and some just seemed content to sit in the warm spring sunshine. Depth of field is always a problem with such small insects and high magnification, these images are around f/20 using the legendary 200mm micro Nikkor. Here are a couple of shots of these fascinating bugs.sloe bug (Dolycoris baccarum)

sloe bug (Dolycoris baccarum)sloe bug (Dolycoris baccarum)sloe bug (Dolycoris baccarum)

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