Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Pseudaulacaspis pentagona
(mulberry scale)



Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale)


  • Last modified
  • 15 May 2019
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Pest
  • Natural Enemy
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Pseudaulacaspis pentagona
  • Preferred Common Name
  • mulberry scale
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Uniramia
  •         Class: Insecta

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Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).
CopyrightPublic Domain - Released by Scot Nelson/via flickr - CC0
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).
InfestationPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).Public Domain - Released by Scot Nelson/via flickr - CC0
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).
CopyrightPublic Domain - Released by Scot Nelson/via flickr - CC0
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).
InfestationPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); infestation on Papaya (Carica papaya).Public Domain - Released by Scot Nelson/via flickr - CC0
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); mature female (scale cover removed), female scales, and first instars.
TitleFemales and larvae
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); mature female (scale cover removed), female scales, and first instars.
Copyright©T. Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); mature female (scale cover removed), female scales, and first instars.
Females and larvaePseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); mature female (scale cover removed), female scales, and first instars.©T. Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches with large colonies of males.
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches with large colonies of males.
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches with large colonies of males.
MalesPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches with large colonies of males.©Mani/Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches infested with females.
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches infested with females.
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches infested with females.
FemalesPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); branches infested with females. ©Mani/Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); female in a colony with the exit-hole of an endoparasitoid.
TitleNatural enemy
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); female in a colony with the exit-hole of an endoparasitoid.
Copyright©T. Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); female in a colony with the exit-hole of an endoparasitoid.
Natural enemyPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); female in a colony with the exit-hole of an endoparasitoid.©T. Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); anatomic details of an adult female. 1. General aspect. 2. Pygidium. 3. Anterior spiracle. (Not to scale)
TitleAdult female
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); anatomic details of an adult female. 1. General aspect. 2. Pygidium. 3. Anterior spiracle. (Not to scale)
Copyright©CAB International
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); anatomic details of an adult female. 1. General aspect. 2. Pygidium. 3. Anterior spiracle. (Not to scale)
Adult femalePseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); anatomic details of an adult female. 1. General aspect. 2. Pygidium. 3. Anterior spiracle. (Not to scale)©CAB International
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); pygidium of a female.
CaptionPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); pygidium of a female.
Copyright©T. Kozar
Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); pygidium of a female.
PygidiumPseudaulacaspis pentagona (mulberry scale); pygidium of a female.©T. Kozar


Top of page

Preferred Scientific Name

  • Pseudaulacaspis pentagona (Targioni Tozzetti, 1886) MacGillivray, 1921

Preferred Common Name

  • mulberry scale

Other Scientific Names

  • Aspidiotus lanatus (Cockerell) Ferris, 1941
  • Aspidiotus vitiensis Maskell, 1895
  • Aulacaspis pentagona (Targioni Tozzetti) Cockerell, 1902
  • Aulacaspis pentagona auranticolor (Cockerell) Carnes, 1907
  • Aulacaspis pentagona rubra (Maskell) Fernald, 1903
  • Chionaspis prunicola Maskell, 1895
  • Diaspis amygdali Tryon, 1889
  • Diaspis amygdali var. rubra Maskell, 1889
  • Diaspis auranticolor Cockerell, 1899
  • Diaspis geranii Maskell, 1897
  • Diaspis lanata (Cockerell) Green, 1896
  • Diaspis lanatus Cockerell, 1892
  • Diaspis patelliformis Sasaki, 1894
  • Diaspis pentagona Targioni Tozzetti, 1886
  • Diaspis rubra (Maskell) Scott, 1952
  • Epidiaspis vitiensis (Maskell) Lindinger, 1937
  • Howardia prunicola (Maskell) Kirkaldy, 1902
  • Pseudaulacaspis amygdali Tryon, 1889
  • Pseudaulacaspis prunicola
  • Sasakiaspis pentagona (Targioni Tozzetti), Kuwana, 1926

International Common Names

  • English: peach scale; West Indian peach scale; white peach scale; white scale
  • Spanish: cochinilla algodonosa; escama de flecos (Colombia)
  • French: cochenille du mûrier; kermès du mûrier
  • Russian: tutovaya schitovka
  • Portuguese: cochonilha branca da amoreira

Local Common Names

  • France: chermes des murier; cochenille des murier
  • Germany: Mandel-Schildlaus; Maulbeer-Schildlaus
  • Hungary: eperfa pajzstetu; Japán pajzstetu
  • Italy: cocciniglia bianca del gelso e del pesco
  • Japan: kuwa-kaigaramusi
  • South Africa: wit perske-dopluis
  • Spain: cochinilla blanca del duraznero; escma de fleccos; piojo blanco del moral y melocotonero; piojo de la morera
  • Turkey: dut kabuklu biti; dut kosnili

EPPO code

  • PSEAPE (Pseudaulacaspis pentagona)
  • PSEAPR (Pseudaulacaspis prunicola)

Taxonomic Tree

Top of page
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Uniramia
  •                 Class: Insecta
  •                     Order: Hemiptera
  •                         Suborder: Sternorrhyncha
  •                             Unknown: Coccoidea
  •                                 Family: Diaspididae
  •                                     Genus: Pseudaulacaspis
  •                                         Species: Pseudaulacaspis pentagona

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

Top of page There is some debate as to whether P. pentagona and Pseudaulacaspis prunicola should be treated as separate species. Borchsenius (1966) treated P. prunicola as a synonym of P. pentagona. Some other authors called attention to the variability of characters of P. prunicola: Davidson et al. (1983), Danzig (1993), and Kosztarab (1996) treated them separately. The later opinions are followed in this data sheet; however, this question warrants further study.


Top of page The test of the female is slightly convex, white, ca 1.5-2.8 mm in diameter with central or sub-central yellow exuviae. Beneath the test, young adult females are pear shaped, orange-yellow; egg-laying females are almost circular. In adult females the pygidium has 3 pairs of well-developed lobes, notched on the outer margin. The plates between the lobes are partly pointed or fimbriated. Five perivulvar pore groups are present. There are high numbers of pores associated with the first pair of spiracles (Kosztarab and Kozar, 1988). Ghauri (1962) describes adult males. Male scales are smaller than females, narrow, with paralle sides and three parallel longitudinal ridges, white with a yellow spot at one end. Adult males each have one pair of wings, long antennae and limbs, no mouthparts and long genitalia.


Top of page

P. pentagona originated in eastern Asia. It was accidentally introduced to Italy in the nineteenth century, and subsequently, to other regions: for example, USA, Argentina and Australia. It is currently widely distributed in the Palearctic and Nearctic Regions (Kozar, 1990a). There are many publications concerning its detailed distribution and importance in different parts of the world (Konstantinova, 1976; Kozar and Konstantinova, 1981; Davidson and Miller, 1990; Kozar et al., 1994; Anon., 1996).

This species is probably intercepted in most countries; however, interceptions go largely unreported. The species is thermophilous, so it only lives indoors in colder countries (for example, Sweden). In the past 20 years it has started to spread northwards in Europe in field conditions; this could be as a result of climate change. Where 'eradication' has been reported, P. pentagona may have died out locally because of unsuitable conditions, or it may persist at low densities. Under these circumstances, monitoring using pheromone traps may be advisable.

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes


AzerbaijanPresentEPPO, 2014
Brunei DarussalamPresentEPPO, 2014
ChinaWidespreadBorchsenius, 1966; EPPO, 2014
-AnhuiPresentEPPO, 2014
-BeijingPresentWang et al., 2009
-FujianPresentEPPO, 2014
-GansuPresentEPPO, 2014
-GuangdongPresentEPPO, 2014
-GuangxiPresentEPPO, 2014
-GuizhouPresentLiu et al., 2012; EPPO, 2014
-HebeiPresentEPPO, 2014
-HenanPresentEPPO, 2014
-Hong KongPresentEPPO, 2014
-HubeiPresentEPPO, 2014
-HunanPresentEPPO, 2014
-JiangsuPresentEPPO, 2014
-JiangxiPresentEPPO, 2014
-LiaoningPresentEPPO, 2014
-Nei MengguPresentEPPO, 2014
-NingxiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-ShaanxiPresentEPPO, 2014
-ShandongPresentEPPO, 2014
-ShanxiPresentEPPO, 2014
-SichuanPresentEPPO, 2014
-XinjiangPresentEPPO, 2014
-YunnanPresentEPPO, 2014
-ZhejiangPresentEPPO, 2014
Georgia (Republic of)PresentBorchsenius, 1966; EPPO, 2014
IndiaRestricted distributionNakahara, 1982; EPPO, 2014
-AssamPresentEPPO, 2014
-Himachal PradeshPresentEPPO, 2014
-Indian PunjabPresentEPPO, 2014
-Jammu and KashmirPresentEPPO, 2014
-KarnatakaPresentNHM, 1983
-SikkimPresentNHM; EPPO, 2014
-Uttar PradeshPresentEPPO, 2014
-West BengalPresentEPPO, 2014
IndonesiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-Irian JayaPresentEPPO, 2014
-JavaPresentEPPO, 2014
IranPresentDanzig, 1993; EPPO, 2014
IraqPresentNHM, 1971; EPPO, 2014
IsraelAbsent, invalid recordEPPO, 2014
JapanPresentBorchsenius, 1966; Ozawa, 1994; EPPO, 2014
-HokkaidoPresentEPPO, 2014
-HonshuPresentEPPO, 2014
-KyushuPresentEPPO, 2014
-Ryukyu ArchipelagoPresentEPPO, 2014
Korea, DPRPresentDanzig, 1993; EPPO, 2014
Korea, Republic ofPresentDanzig, 1993; EPPO, 2014
MalaysiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-Peninsular MalaysiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-SarawakPresentNHM, 1961; EPPO, 2014
MaldivesPresentNHM, 1993; EPPO, 2014
NepalPresentEPPO, 2014
PhilippinesPresentEPPO, 2014
SingaporePresentWaterhouse, 1993
Sri LankaPresentEPPO, 2014
SyriaPresentEPPO, 2014
TaiwanPresentEPPO, 2014
TurkeyPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
VietnamPresentDanzig, 1993; EPPO, 2014


Cape VerdePresentEPPO, 2014
ComorosPresentEPPO, 2014
EgyptPresentEPPO, 2014
GhanaPresentEPPO, 2014
MadagascarPresentEPPO, 2014
MalawiPresentEPPO, 2014
MauritiusPresentEPPO, 2014
RéunionPresentEPPO, 2014
Saint HelenaPresentEPPO, 2014
Sao Tome and PrincipePresentEPPO, 2014
SeychellesPresentEPPO, 2014
South AfricaPresentEPPO, 2014
-Canary IslandsPresentEPPO, 2014
TanzaniaPresentEPPO, 2014
-ZanzibarPresentNakahara, 1982
ZimbabwePresentEPPO, 2014

North America

BermudaPresentEPPO, 2014
CanadaAbsent, formerly presentBorchsenius, 1966; EPPO, 2014
-OntarioAbsent, formerly presentEPPO, 2014
USARestricted distributionBorchsenius, 1966; EPPO, 2014
-AlabamaPresentEPPO, 2014
-CaliforniaAbsent, formerly presentNakahara, 1982; EPPO, 2014
-ConnecticutPresentNakahara, 1982
-DelawarePresentNakahara, 1982
-District of ColumbiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-FloridaPresentEPPO, 2014
-GeorgiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-HawaiiPresentIntroduced1997Borchsenius, 1966; Wood, 2012; EPPO, 2014
-IndianaAbsent, formerly presentKosztarab, 1996; EPPO, 2014
-LouisianaPresentEPPO, 2014
-MainePresentNakahara, 1982
-MarylandPresentKosztarab, 1996; EPPO, 2014
-MississippiPresentEPPO, 2014
-MissouriPresentEPPO, 2014
-MontanaPresentNakahara, 1982
-New JerseyPresentNakahara, 1982
-New MexicoAbsent, formerly presentEPPO, 2014
-North CarolinaPresentEPPO, 2014
-OhioPresentNakahara, 1982
-OregonPresentNakahara, 1982
-Rhode IslandPresentNakahara, 1982
-South CarolinaPresentEPPO, 2014
-TennesseePresentEPPO, 2014
-TexasPresentEPPO, 2014
-VirginiaPresentKosztarab, 1996; EPPO, 2014
-WashingtonPresentKosztarab, 1996
-West VirginiaPresentKosztarab, 1996

Central America and Caribbean

Antigua and BarbudaPresentNHM, 1972; EPPO, 2014
BahamasPresentEPPO, 2014
BarbadosPresentEPPO, 2014
Costa RicaPresentEPPO, 2014
CubaPresentEPPO, 2014
DominicaPresentEPPO, 2014
Dominican RepublicPresentEPPO, 2014
GuadeloupePresentEPPO, 2014
HaitiPresentEPPO, 2014
HondurasPresentEPPO, 2014
JamaicaPresentEPPO, 2014
MartiniquePresentEPPO, 2014
Netherlands AntillesPresentEPPO, 2014
PanamaPresentEPPO, 2014
Puerto RicoPresentEPPO, 2014
Saint Kitts and NevisPresentNHM, 1973; EPPO, 2014
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentNHM, 1976; EPPO, 2014
Trinidad and TobagoPresentNHM, 1990; EPPO, 2014
United States Virgin IslandsPresentEPPO, 2014

South America

ArgentinaPresentEPPO, 2014
BoliviaPresentNakahara, 1982; EPPO, 2014
BrazilRestricted distributionBorchsenius, 1966; EPPO, 2014
-AmazonasPresentEPPO, 2014
-BahiaPresentEPPO, 2014
-Minas GeraisPresentEPPO, 2014
-ParaPresentEPPO, 2014
-ParanaPresentEPPO, 2014
-PernambucoPresentEPPO, 2014
-Rio de JaneiroPresentEPPO, 2014
-Rio Grande do SulPresentEPPO, 2014
-Santa CatarinaPresentEPPO, 2014
-Sao PauloPresentEPPO, 2014
ColombiaPresentEPPO, 2014
PeruPresentNakahara, 1982; EPPO, 2014
SurinamePresentEPPO, 2014
UruguayPresentNakahara, 1982; EPPO, 2014
VenezuelaPresentNHM, 1962; EPPO, 2014


BulgariaPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
CroatiaWidespreadKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014; Milek et al., 2017
CyprusPresentSisman and Ülgentürk, 2010
Czech RepublicPresentIPPC, 2008; EPPO, 2014
FranceRestricted distributionKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
GermanyPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
GreecePresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
-CretePresentEPPO, 2014
HungaryPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
ItalyPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
-SardiniaPresentEPPO, 2014
MacedoniaPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
MaltaPresentNHM, 1994; EPPO, 2014
MontenegroPresentEPPO, 2014
NetherlandsPresentJansen, 1995; EPPO, 2014
PortugalRestricted distributionEPPO, 2014
-AzoresPresentEPPO, 2014
-MadeiraPresentEPPO, 2014
Russian FederationPresentEPPO, 2014
-Russia (Europe)PresentEPPO, 2014
-Russian Far EastPresentEPPO, 2014
-Southern RussiaPresentEPPO, 2014
SerbiaPresentGraora et al., 2009; EPPO, 2014
SlovakiaPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
SloveniaPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988
SpainRestricted distributionKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
SwitzerlandPresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988; EPPO, 2014
UKAbsent, formerly presentSeymour, 1989; Danzig, 1993; EPPO, 2014
-England and WalesAbsent, formerly presentEPPO, 2014
UkrainePresentEPPO, 2014
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)PresentKosztarab and Kozár, 1988


AustraliaPresentEPPO, 2014
-New South WalesPresentEPPO, 2014
-QueenslandPresentEPPO, 2014
FijiPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
GuamPresentEPPO, 2014
Micronesia, Federated states ofPresentEPPO, 2014
New CaledoniaPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
New ZealandAbsent, invalid recordEPPO, 2014
Norfolk IslandPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
Northern Mariana IslandsPresentEPPO, 2014
PalauPresentEPPO, 2014
Papua New GuineaPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
SamoaPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
Solomon IslandsPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
TongaPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
VanuatuPresentWilliams and Watson, 1988; EPPO, 2014
Wallis and Futuna IslandsPresentEPPO, 2014

Risk of Introduction

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P. pentagona is the subject of quarantine regulations in many countries (Anon., 1976, 1993), but not in EU countries.

Hosts/Species Affected

Top of page P. pentagona is a polyphagous species. The host plant range could be much wider than is listed. However, P. pentagonia cannot complete development on some of the hosts listed, which indicates that some may not be true host plants. P. pentagonia is mainly a pest of deciduous fruits, including peach, currant, grape, kiwi, walnut; it also attacks some woody ornamental plants, including Morus, Sophora, Syringa, Catalpa, Euonymus and Paulownia (APPPC, 1987; Borchsenius, 1966; Konstantinova, 1976; Davidson and Miller, 1990; Kozar, 1990a; Kosztarab, 1996).

Host Plants and Other Plants Affected

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Plant nameFamilyContext
Abelmoschus esculentus (okra)MalvaceaeMain
Acacia (wattles)FabaceaeOther
Acer (maples)AceraceaeOther
Aesculus (buckeye)HippocastanaceaeOther
Argyreia (asia glory)ConvolvulaceaeOther
Azadirachta indica (neem tree)MeliaceaeOther
Bauhinia (camel's foot)FabaceaeOther
Berberis (barberries)BerberidaceaeOther
Brachychiton acerifolius (flame tree)SterculiaceaeOther
Buddleia (Butterflybush)LoganiaceaeOther
Callicarpa (beautyberry)LamiaceaeOther
Camellia sinensis (tea)TheaceaeOther
Capsicum (peppers)SolanaceaeOther
Carica papaya (pawpaw)CaricaceaeMain
Cassia (sennas)FabaceaeOther
Casuarina (beefwood)CasuarinaceaeOther
Catalpa bignonioides (Southern catalpa)BignoniaceaeOther
Celtis (nettle tree)UlmaceaeMain
Cocos nucifera (coconut)ArecaceaeOther
Consolida ambigua (rocket larkspur)RanunculaceaeOther
Cornus (Dogwood)CornaceaeOther
Cornus alba (red-barked dogwood)CornaceaeOther
Cydonia (quince)RosaceaeOther
Cytisus (Broom)FabaceaeOther
Diospyros (malabar ebony)EbenaceaeOther
Erythrina spp.FabaceaeOther
Euonymus (spindle trees)CelastraceaeMain
Euphorbia pulcherrima (poinsettia)EuphorbiaceaeOther
Flacourtia jangomas (Indian plum)FlacourtiaceaeOther
Flacourtia rukam (rukam)FlacourtiaceaeOther
Forsythia intermedia (Golden bells)OleaceaeOther
Fraxinus (ashes)OleaceaeOther
Fraxinus americana (white ash)OleaceaeOther
Fraxinus excelsior (ash)OleaceaeOther
Genista (broom)FabaceaeOther
Geranium (cranesbill)GeraniaceaeOther
Gleditsia triacanthos (honey locust)FabaceaeOther
Gossypium (cotton)MalvaceaeOther
Heliotropium arborescens (cherry-pie)BoraginaceaeOther
Hevea brasiliensis (rubber)EuphorbiaceaeOther
Hibiscus (rosemallows)MalvaceaeOther
Hypericum (st Johnsworts)ClusiaceaeOther
Jasminum (jasmine)OleaceaeOther
Juglans (walnuts)JuglandaceaeMain
Juglans regia (walnut)JuglandaceaeOther
Kalanchoe pinnata (cathedral bells)CrassulaceaeOther
Ligustrum (privet)OleaceaeOther
Mallotus japonicusEuphorbiaceaeOther
Malus (ornamental species apple)RosaceaeMain
Mangifera indica (mango)AnacardiaceaeOther
Mikania ternataAsteraceaeOther
Morus (mulberrytree)MoraceaeMain
Morus alba (mora)MoraceaeOther
Morus nigra (black mulberry)MoraceaeOther
Nephelium (rambutan)SapindaceaeOther
Nerium (oleander)ApocynaceaeMain
Olea europaea subsp. europaea (European olive)OleaceaeOther
Paeonia (peonies)PaeoniaceaeOther
Passiflora (passionflower)PassifloraceaeOther
Paulownia tomentosa (paulownia)ScrophulariaceaeOther
Pelargonium (pelargoniums)GeraniaceaeOther
Phaseolus (beans)FabaceaeOther
Phellodendron (cork tree)RutaceaeOther
Philadelphus coronarius (mock orange)HydrangeaceaeMain
Phoenix (date palm)ArecaceaeOther
Platanus (planes)PlatanaceaeOther
Plumeria (frangipani)ApocynaceaeOther
Populus (poplars)SalicaceaeOther
Prunus (stone fruit)RosaceaeMain
Prunus armeniaca (apricot)RosaceaeMain
Prunus avium (sweet cherry)RosaceaeMain
Prunus japonica (Japanese bush cherry tree)RosaceaeMain
Prunus mume (Japanese apricot tree)RosaceaeMain
Prunus persica (peach)RosaceaeMain
Prunus salicina (Japanese plum)RosaceaeMain
Prunus serotina (black cherry)RosaceaeOther
Prunus tomentosa (Nanking cherry tree)RosaceaeMain
Psidium (guava)MyrtaceaeOther
Pterocarya (wing nut)JuglandaceaeOther
Pyrus (pears)RosaceaeMain
Rhus (Sumach)AnacardiaceaeOther
Rhus typhina (staghorn sumac)AnacardiaceaeOther
Ribes (currants)GrossulariaceaeMain
Ricinus communis (castor bean)EuphorbiaceaeMain
Robinia (locust)FabaceaeOther
Rubus (blackberry, raspberry)RosaceaeMain
Salix (willows)SalicaceaeOther
Salix babylonica (weeping willow)SalicaceaeOther
Schinus (pepper tree)AnacardiaceaeOther
Sedum (stonecrop)CrassulaceaeMain
Solanum (nightshade)SolanaceaeOther
Sorbus (rowan)RosaceaeMain
Sterculia urens (kateera gum)SterculiaceaeOther
Styphnolobium japonicum (pagoda tree)FabaceaeOther
Symphoricarpos (snowberry)CaprifoliaceaeOther
Tetradium ruticarpumRutaceaeOther
Tylophora asthmaticaAsclepiadaceaeOther
Ulmus (elms)UlmaceaeOther
Veronica (Speedwell)ScrophulariaceaeOther
Vitis (grape)VitaceaeMain
Zanthoxylum (prickly-ash)RutaceaeOther

Growth Stages

Top of page Flowering stage, Fruiting stage, Seedling stage, Vegetative growing stage


Top of page Heavy infestations are often found as thick crusts on tree trunks and older branches in temperate regions, and rarely on the roots. The leaves and fruits are not usually infested. The large white colonies of females and males on the branches that make up a heavy infestation are easy to recognize.

In the case of heavy infestations, branches or entire trees can die. Heavily infested plants may die some years after the onset of infestation. Younger plants are more susceptible.

List of Symptoms/Signs

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SignLife StagesType
Leaves / abnormal leaf fall
Leaves / necrotic areas
Leaves / yellowed or dead
Roots / external feeding
Stems / dieback
Stems / discoloration of bark
Stems / distortion
Stems / external feeding
Whole plant / dwarfing
Whole plant / early senescence
Whole plant / plant dead; dieback

Biology and Ecology

Top of page P. pentagona has between one and four generations per year in different parts of the world. Development under local conditions are described by Bobb et al. (1973); Shinano et al. (1976); Paloukis (1979); Stimmel (1982); Park and Kim (1990), Hanks and Denno (1993), and Erkilic and Uygun (1997a). It overwinters in cold countries as adult females. In Central Europe, egg-laying starts during mid-May. In Southern Europe, egg-laying starts 1 month earlier. Crawlers appear after 1-2 months. Females each lay ca 100 eggs (Ball, 1980). Males of the first generation start to fly at the begining of July, and the second generation flies in mid-September in Central Europe (Kosztarab and Kozar, 1988). In South Europe, flight commences about 1 month earlier.

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Adalia bipunctata Predator Adults/Nymphs
Aphytis chilensis Parasite
Aphytis chrysomphali Parasite Adults/Nymphs China; Shanghai apricots; cherries
Aphytis diaspidis Parasite Adults/Nymphs Bermuda; Jamaica cotton; mulberries; Nerium oleander; pawpaws
Aphytis lingnanensis Parasite Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Aphytis proclia Parasite Adults/Nymphs Bermuda; Italy mulberries; Nerium oleander
Aprostocetus purpureus Parasite
Archenomus orientalis Parasite Adults/Nymphs Italy mulberries
Arrhenophagus albitibiae Parasite
Arrhenophagus chionaspidis Parasite
Azotus atomon Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Azotus lepidus Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Azotus pentagona Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Azotus perspeciosus Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Azotus platensis Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Chilocorus cacti Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda; Sao Tome and Principe Nerium oleander
Chilocorus circumdatus Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Chilocorus hupehanus Predator Adults/Nymphs
Chilocorus kuwanae Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda; China; Shanghai apricots; cherries; Nerium oleander
Chilocorus nigrita Predator Adults/Nymphs
Chilocorus politus Predator Adults/Nymphs
Chilocorus renipustulatus Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Chilocorus similis Predator Adults/Nymphs USA peaches
Coccidophilus cariba Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Coccidophilus citricola Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Coccophagoides kuwanai Parasite Adults/Nymphs USA peaches
Comperiella bifasciata Parasite Bermuda Nerium oleander
Cryptognatha simillima Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Cybocephalus fodori minor Predator
Cybocephalus gibbulus Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda; South Africa Nerium oleander
Cybocephalus nipponicus Predator
Decadiomus hughesi Predator Adults/Nymphs
Dentifibula viburni Predator
Encarsia amicula Parasite
Encarsia berlesei Parasite Adults/Nymphs Argentina; Austria; Bermuda; Brazil; France; Iran; Italy; Madagascar; Peru; Puerto Rico; Spain; Switzerland; Uruguay; USSR; Western Samoa; Greece mulberries; Nerium oleander; pawpaws; peaches; woody plants
Encarsia citrina Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Encarsia diaspidicola Parasite Adults/Nymphs Bermuda; Western Samoa Nerium oleander; woody plants
Encarsia fasciata Parasite
Encarsia lounsburyi Parasite
Encarsia perniciosi Parasite Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Epitetracnemus comis Parasite
Epitetracnemus zetterstedtii Parasite
Exochomus quadripustulatus Predator Adults/Nymphs
Heteroconis picticornis Bermuda Nerium oleander
Marietta leopardina Parasite Adults/Nymphs
Orius minutus Predator
Pentilia insidiosa Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Pharoscymnus horni Predator Adults/Nymphs
Pharoscymnus pharoides Predator
Pharoscymnus tomeensis Predator Adults/Nymphs
Prodilis sp. nr. gorhami Predator Adults/Nymphs Bermuda Nerium oleander
Pteroptrix orientalis Parasite
Rhyzobius lophanthae Predator Adults/Eggs/Larvae/Nymphs/Pupae Italy Citrus
Rhyzobius pulchellus Predator Adults/Nymphs
Signiphora aspidioti Parasite
Sticholotis quadrisignata Predator Adults/Nymphs
Sukunahikona prapawan Predator Adults/Nymphs
Zaomma lambinus Parasite

Notes on Natural Enemies

Top of page P. pentagona is attacked by a large number of parasitoids and predators, which have been studied in detail especially in the Palaearctic region (Trapitzin, 1978; Kosztarab and Kozar, 1988). Studies of natural enemies of P. pentagona include: Zaets (1970); Rosen and DeBach (1976); Gordon (1978); Yasuda (1981); Darling and Johnson (1984); Noyes and Hui (1987); Liebregts et al. (1989); Gordon and Hilburn (1990); Habibian (1991); Li (1991), and Hanks and Denno (1993). A comprehensive list of the natural enemies of P. pentagona is provided by Waterhouse and Norris (1987).

These natural enemies are efficient regulators of P. pentagona; they keep pest density down in natural habitats. Where chemical control has been used against P. pentagona in orchards, its natural enemies can be killed causing local outbreaks. P. pentagona has caused major problems in areas where it was accidentally introduced, in the absence of its natural regulators. The efficiency of natural enemies is reduced in urban areas by pollution. Consequently, P. pentagona can cause severe damage to ornamental plants in towns and cities.

There have been a number of successful biological control programmes against P. pentagona in different parts of the world, especially in the USA, Europe and Russia. Usually Encarsia (Prospaltella) berlesei is reared, released, and established, according to the protocols of Rosen (1991) (see also Greathead, 1976). E. berlesei was released in several European countries, and spread into neighbouring countries. Encarsia diaspidicola has been successfully released in Western Samoa (Sands et al., 1990).

Many of the listed parasitoids of P. pentagona may also be hyperparasitoids.


Top of page Crop losses caused by P. pentagona are difficult to assess. Trees lose vigour, and their lives are shortened. When P. pentagona becomes newly established in a region this may lead to the loss of whole trees and plantations. This species is a quarantine pest in many parts of the world; infested plants may be refused entry into many countries.

In recent years, outbreaks have been observed in different parts of the world on several species of fruit, especially kiwi, and peach (Whitmore et al., 1974; Kozarzevskaja and Vlainic, 1981; Kozarzevskaja et al., 1986; Ram and Pathak, 1987; Hickel et al., 1997). In Europe, heavy outbreaks have occurred on ornamental plants in Hungary (Kosztarab and Kozar, 1988) and Switzerland (Kozar et al., 1994; Mani et al., 1995).

Detection and Inspection

Top of page Heavy infestations on the bark of trees produce large, visible white colonies of female and male scales. Some infestations may be confirmed by laboratory examination with stereomicroscopic analyses of the branches, following the survey system described in detail by Kozar (1990b,c).

The structure and composition of the P. pentagona pheromone is known. P. pentagona pheromones are emitted by females and attract males, but not parasitoids. Pheromone traps are widely used for detection in newly infested regions, especially in Europe (Kozar et al., 1997). Colour and sticky traps were have also been developed to monitor the flight and dispersal of males and parasitoids (Kozar, 1990c, and Kozar et al., 1995).

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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Only microscopic characteristics can be used to identify the species definitively. Kosztarab and Kozar (1988) and Williams and Watson (1988) describe the methodology of slide mounting. This species can be differentiated from P. prunicola according to the number and shape of plates. P. pentagona has mostly bifurcated plates, whilst P. prunicola usually has spine-like plates. These characters show great variability depending on temperature, geographic locality and host plant (Danzig, 1993).

Prevention and Control

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Regulatory Control

For details of quarantine regulations for P. pentagona see Anon. (1976, 1993). Quarantine recommendations and requirements for the treatment of seedlings and other nursery materials have included irradiation, fumigation, cold-treatment and heat-treatment (Angerilli and Fitzgibbon, 1990; Balsari and Tamagnone, 1997).

Cultural Control and Sanitary Methods

Obtaining scale-free nursery material is very important, because young plants can die very quickly after infestation. The removal of heavily infested parts of the trees and the cleaning of bark from infestation can improve the efficacy of chemical treatments. Surrounding vegetation can be a source of re-infestation by pests and/or a refugium for natural enemies.

Host-Plant Resistance

There are no varieties that exhibit real resistance to this pest (Arru, 1976). There are several tolerant varieties of different fruit tree species, but these varieties are not usually marketable.

Biological Control

The biological control of P. pentagona is well-studied (see Natural Enemies). Coccinellids and a number of parasitoids including Encarsia berlesei can be effective control agents. However, the effect of biological control programmes can only be observed over a relatively long period, and only in the absence of insecticides. The use of a range of different introduced parasitoid agents and predators, along with the encouragement of indigenous natural enemies can increase the efficacy of control. However, biological control is unlikely to be of significant use in controlling infestations on stressed ornamental plants in urban areas in Europe at times when the weather favours pest development.

Chemical Control

Fumigation of seedlings has traditionally been the most important means by which early infestation by P. pentagona is prevented.

Oil sprays have proved effective for the treatment of infested plantations (Meyer and Nalepa, 1991). Other insecticides may have different efficacy in different parts of the world (Torrel et al., 1987; Isufi and Mirtha, 1996; Erkilic and Uygun, 1997b). In orchards, insecticides (organophosphates, carbamates and pyrethroids) are very efficient against crawlers. These chemicals are often used in the summer against other orchard pests, such as codling moth (Cydia pomonella), leafrollers, leafminers and mites. However, chemical control should be avoided if biological control is in place, to avoid killing natural enemies of the scale.

Early Warning Systems

Kozar (1990b,c) studied monitoring and forecasting systems for P. pentagona in detail. Yellow sticky traps are useful for monitoring males and parasitoids, and pheromone traps collect males. The percentage of infested fruit can be monitored, with control being implemented when infestation levels pass a threshold.

IPM programmes

IPM programmes against orchard pests including scale insects have been developed by Kozar and Varjas (1976), Darvas and Zseller (1985), Parisot (1990), Semisi et al. (1992), Paloukis and Navzoridis (1995), and Jenser et al. (1997). These programmes incorporate the use of insect growth regulators (Rosen, 1991) which are effective against scale insects.


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