Genus Glycaspis
White Lerp Insect
White Fibrous Lerp Insect
Genus Spondyliaspis
Shell Lerp Insect
Genus Hyalinaspis
Clam Lerp Insect
Clam Fibrous Lerp Insect
Brown Clam Lerp Insect
Genus Acizzia
Wattle Plant Lice
Other Psyllids


Cotton Cushion Scale - Icerya purchasi

Family Margarodidae

This page contains pictures and information about Cotton Cushion Scales that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia. The Cotton Cushion Scale are also known as Australian Mealybug and Fluted scale.

Matured female diameter 6mm and a nymph
The picture shows a matured female cottony cushion scale. The white cottony substance is her egg sac. Males are rare and females can reproduce without mating. The species is native to Australia where Acacia is its natural host. It is accidentally introduced to California and became pest in citrus industry. 
wpe8.jpg (29399 bytes)  wpe8.jpg (25473 bytes) DSCN0614.jpg (120220 bytes)
Newly hatched nymphs are red with dark legs and antennae. Cotton Cushion Scales feed on twigs and leaves. They can be the serious pest for gardens and orchards. Ladybirds and lacewings  are their natural enemy.
wpe4F.jpg (20369 bytes) DSCN7089.jpg (125600 bytes) DSCN7602.jpg (175262 bytes)
They are common on Acacia in Brisbane bushlands. They are usually alone or in small group on young stems and twigs. They seldom move although they have full functional legs. For the matured females, there is the white waxy secretions attached. Those white material will be used as egg-sac. 
DSC_2643.jpg (162140 bytes) DSC_2434.jpg (154655 bytes) DSC_2435.jpg (176601 bytes)
Cotton Cushion Scales are sap-sucker and produce honeydew. They are occasionally attended by ants.   
DSC_0657.jpg (197248 bytes) DSC_2641.jpg (174471 bytes)
Males are rare for this species. Females can self-fertilize in reproduction.   
PC9_2086.jpg (172603 bytes) PC9_2085.jpg (126108 bytes)  
Young female                                                                                                                                   
DSC_0657.jpg (149790 bytes) DSC_4432.jpg (143888 bytes) DSC_4434.jpg (84842 bytes)
Newly hatched nymphs are red with dark legs and antennae.  
1. A field guide to insects in Australia - By Paul Zborowski and Ross Storey, Reed New Holland, 1996, p86.
2. Insects of Australia and New Zealand - R. J. Tillyard, Angus & Robertson, Ltd, Sydney, 1926, p173. 
3. Insects of Australia - CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University Press, 2nd Edition 1991, p 459.

Back to top

Up ] Bird of Paradise Flies - Violet Phoenix ] Bird of Paradise Flies - Silver Phoenix ] [ Cotton Cushion Scale ] Snow Ball Mealybug ]


See us in our Home page. Download large pictures in our Wallpaper web page. Give us comments in our Guest Book, or send email to us. A great way to support us is to buy the CD from us.  
Last updated: October 10, 2010.