Diagnosis and Specialized Morphology
Species of Peiratinae are characterized by:
- short antennal scapus relative to the pedicel
- first visible labial segment is the shortest
- anterior pronotal lobe is longer than the posterior lobe
- enlarged forecoxae
- fortibiae dilated distally and with fossula spongiosa (middle tibiae with fossula spongiosa)
Taxonomic history of the subfamily is being reviewed.
The subfamily Peiratinae is found worldwide, comprising of about 31 genera. Species are primarily ground-dwelling and feed on other arthropods (Schuh & Slater 1995). These assassin bugs are fast runners and are well-known for the extremely painful bite they deliver (Schuh & Slater 1995). They are usually attracted to lights.
Schuh, R.T., Slater, J.A. 1995. True Bugs of the World (Hemiptera: Heteroptera): Classification and Natural History. Comstock Pub. Associates, Ithaca. 336 pp.