PEST PROFILES: SCALE INSECTS
Click on image to view larger. Scale Insects
Wax scales are globular and coated with a layer of beige, pinkish, whitish or grayish wax. They may grow to over 1/8 inch (Florida wax scale) to almost 1/4 inch (barnacle scale) in diameter. Several species of wax scales occur in Texas.
Wax scales infest ficus, gardenia, hawthorn, holly, and ornamental pear, pyracantha and other landscape trees and shrubs. They are a minor citrus pest. Wax scales injure plants by removing large quantities of plant sap and they produced sticky honeydew.
Eggs are oval, orangish, and fill the inside of the female scale insect. Eggs hatch over a period of 2 to 3 weeks. First instar crawlers settle on leaves, twigs and stems of host plants. After settling, nymphs begin to secrete wax in tufts around the body that give these insects a star-like appearance. Nymphs of the barnacle scale migrate from leaves to the woody tissue soon after molting to the third instar. There may be 2 or more generations per year.