A network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests.
PestNet is a network that helps people worldwide obtain rapid advice and information on crop protection, including the identification and management of plant pests. It started in 1999. Anyone with an interest in plant protection is welcome to join. PestNet is free and is moderated, ensuring that messages are confined to plant protection.
July 2003. A scale found in Palau on Mussaenda frondosa (many) and also Macaranga carolinensis (few), and identified as the wax scale, Ceroplastes sp. (F.) (Hemiptera: suborder Sternorrhyncha: superfamily Coccoidea: family Coccidae: genus Ceroplastes). A slide-mounted specimen is needed to take it to species.
Wax scales feed on phloem sap and excrete sugary honeydew – hence the attendant ants, which defend the scales from their natural enemies. Heavy infestations can cause severe fouling of nearby surfaces with honeydew, resulting in growth of sooty mould; if leaves are fouled, this may result in defoliation and resultant loss of vigour. Wax scales are not host-specific, so infestations could occur on a variety of woody hosts including fruit trees.
Later, the scale was identified by the University of Guam as C ceriferus.