Authors: Van Driesche, R.G., J.H. LaForest, C.T. Bargeron, R.C. Reardon, and M. Herlihy. 2012. Forest Pest Insects in North America: a Photographic Guide. USDA Forest Service. Forest Health Technology Enterprise Team. Morgantown, WV. FHTET-2012-02.
Orientation to Pest
Florida red scale, Chrysomphalus aonidum (L.), is an Asian scale invasive in the United States. It is one of the most polyphagous insects known, recorded from 70 families of plants. It is most often reported on agricultural or ornamental plants but occurs in natural vegetation as well. The scale feeds on foliage, producing yellow areas. Heavy infestations may cause foliage to drop.
Hosts Commonly Attacked
Citrus (Citrus), holly (Ilex), and palms are the more commonly affected groups of plants.
The U.S. distribution of this scale is from North Carolina, south and west to Texas, as well as Hawaii. It is common in greenhouses throughout the country. It is also common in most tropical and subtropical parts of the world, including Puerto Rico.
Biological Control Agents
This scale has been the focus of parasitoid introductions in Texas and Florida. The aphelinid Aphytis holoxanthus DeBach from Israel has provided substantial control in both locations.
- Clancy, D. W., A. G. Selhime, and M. H. Muma. 1963. Establishment of Aphytis holoxanthus as a parasite of Florida red scale in Florida. Journal of Economic Entomology 56: 603-605.
- Steinberg, S., H. Podoler, and D. Rosen. 1986. Biological control of the Florida red scale, Chrysomphalus aonidum, in Israel by two parasite species: Current status in the coastal plain Phytoparasitica 14: 199-204.