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(John Obermeyer, Purdue University)
Common Name: Spittlebug

Order: Homoptera

Family: Cercopidae

Pest Status: Spittlebugs occasionally damage agronomic crops such as alfalfa, but generally are considered minor pests.

Appearance: Spittlebugs derive their name from the white, frothy spittle the nymphs produce. Adults resemble leafhoppers, but are quite large, about 1/3-inch long. The eyes are bright red and the body color varies from brown to orange. They have dark wings with two red stripes that cross the back.

Life Cycle: Adults lay their eggs in late summer. Eggs overwinter. The eggs hatch in early spring, and the nymphs go through five instars before emerging as adults. It takes approximately 40 to 52 days to complete the life cycle.

Where to Collect: Spittlebugs are found in or near masses of froth at leaf nodes on various plants. Sweep nets often are the best collecting tools.