Please refer also to the following links for details on this group:
Ochteridae = Link 1
These are the velvety shore bugs. They derive their name from a velvety appearance. There are about 26 identified species.
They are egg-shaped and 3-5.5 mm. long. They occur along the banks of streams and ponds and also in sandy or muddy places near to shallow water.. Their color is blue or black, and they are are all considered predaceous. Clausen (1940) noted that they are littoral in habit and feed on insects and other small animals around the muddy margins of ponds and streams.
The following detailed descriptions are derived from Andersen & Weir (2004):
The body is small, ovoid, moderately dorsoventrally flattened, typically darkish in color with pale markings and a soft velvety dorsum. The head is declivent and lacks a cephalic trichobothria. Eyes are large and reniform, occupying much of the dorsal aspect of the head; two ocelli are present. Antennae have 4 segments and are visible from above, with short first and second segments 1 and 2 short. The rostrum is slender, 4-segmented, usually reaching beyond the metacoxae. The pronotum is subtrapezoidal, with lateral explanate margins and posterior emarginate margins. The forewing is differentiated into a corium, clavus, and a membrane with large cells. Metathoracic scent glands are present but nymphs lack dorsal abdominal glands. The legs are slender and adapted for running. The fore and mid tarsi have 2-segments, hind tarsi 3-segments. The length averages 3.4 mm up to 9.8 mm
Instream habitat: Ochteridae species are semi-aquatic bugs that occur in the littoral areas of quiet waters, especially mudflats and sandbars, in association with riparian vegetation. Ochterid bugs are particularly vulnerable to habitat disturbance.
Behavior & Life History
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Andersen, N. M. & T. A.Weir. 2004, Cassis & Gross 1995, Lansbury & Lake 2002
Carver, M., Gross, G.F. & Woodward, T.E. 1991. Hemiptera (bugs, leafhoppers, cicadas, aphids, scale insects, etc.). In: The Insects of Australia - a Textbook for Students and Research Workers Volume 1. Melbourne University Press, Melbourne.