Worldwide distribution. Mostly, citrus, but the Pacific banana is a host. An important pest.
The scale has tube-like mouthparts, sucking sap from stems. Heavy infestations cause leaf fall and dieback.
Eggs hatch and “crawlers” walk or spread by wind, settle, feed and produce the protective armour, oyster-shaped in females, white and straight in males. Males become fly-like, without mouthparts, mate and die.
Natural enemies: ladybird beetles and parasitoid wasps.
Cultural control: scale-free nursery stock; Gliricidia windbreaks to protect from spread of "crawlers"; adequate nutrition.
Chemical control: use lime sulphur or wettable sulphur, leaving 30 days if also spraying oils (READ INSTRUCTIONS); alternatively, spot-spray infestations with horticultural oil, white oil, or soap solution (see Fact Sheet no. 56); avoid malathion and synthetic pyrethroids - they will kill natural enemies.