How do you recognize long-tailed mealybug?

The most obvious features are the two long tail hairs at the end of the body. These long tail hairs are at least as long as the body, but often even longer. In addition, the smaller waxy threads around the body are longer than most other mealybug species. They have a somewhat fluffy appearance. The body has a lightgrey colour and a length stripe across the back. Longtailed mealybugs are viviparous, which means live birthing. The eggs hatch inside the mother resulting in no visible egg masses. The females are 3-4 mm long and have more elongated bodies than other mealybugs females. The longtailed mealybug is often hidden in a fluffy white mass.  

Pseudococcus longispinus male and female
Long-talied mealybug female (top) and male (bottom)
Pseudococcus longispinus male
Long-tailed mealybug male

Long-tailed mealybug damage and distribution

Longtailed mealybugs prefer warm and humid environments and often hide in axillary buds, flower buds and under fruit bracts. They pierce the plants tissue and start sap sucking, damaging the plants. Feeding damage leads to deformed or stumped plant tissue growth, which can, especially in ornamentals, result in heavy damage. Longtailed mealybugs produce honeydew which promotes fungus growth which in turn reduces photosynthesis. In addition, tropical fruits can be damaged, resulting in brown bruises which can be used for infection by secondary pests and diseases, making them unfit for sale 

Life cycle long-tailed mealybug

  • 60-80 eggs per female
  • no external egg mass
  • egg to adult in two months
  • Lifespan female: 1-2 months, male: several days
  • several generations per year

Host plants long-tailed mealybug

  • many ornamental plants
  • orchids
  • palms, Dracaena, ferns
  • tropical fruits
  • grapes
Products against

Long-tailed mealybug

CRYPTOLAEMUS MONTROUZIERI

Effective against
– All mealybug species

LONGIX Ca - Cryptanusia aureiscutellum

CRYPTANUSIA AUREISCUTELLUM

Effective against
– Long-tailed mealybug

ANAGYRUS FUSCIVENTRIS

Effective against
– Long-tailed mealybug

Common mealybug species

Citrus mealybug

Long-tailed mealybug
Obscure mealybug
Solanum mealybug