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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Fort Pierce, Florida » U.S. Horticultural Research Laboratory » Subtropical Insects and Horticulture Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #399109

Research Project: Exotic Whitefly and Subtropical Invasive Pests of Vegetables and Ornamental Plants

Location: Subtropical Insects and Horticulture Research

Title: Datasheet on Melanaspis leivasi

item Ahmed, Muhammad

Submitted to: Center for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI) Invasive Species Compendium
Publication Type: Literature Review
Publication Acceptance Date: 11/1/2023
Publication Date: 11/1/2023
Citation: Ahmed, M.Z. 2023. Datasheet on Melanaspis leivasi. Center for Agriculture and Biosciences International (CABI) Invasive Species Compendium.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Melanaspis leivasi Costa Lima (Hemiptera: Diaspididae) is known from Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala, Mexico, and Panama and is not known to occur in the United States. The first report of M. leivasi in the USA was from Florida in 2017. It was collected from Ficus aurea Nutt., commonly known as the Florida strangler fig (or simply strangler fig), from Palm Beach County. The most recent record was on the same host species collected from Broward County in 2022. There are two species of Melanaspis, obscure scale, M. obscura (Comstock), and gloomy scale, M. tenebricosa (Comstock), which are considered to be serious pests of landscape trees in Florida. I, therefore, consider M. leivasi to have the potential to be a pest of concern in Florida. This review summarizes its taxonomy, diagnosis, distribution, host plants, economic impact, closely related species, and management. There is no control available for this species. In general, the control of armored scales is difficult. One of the best approaches for managing armored scales is regular inspection of incoming and already existing plants in the landscape. High-pressure water sprays help remove armored scales from bark and reduce populations without the need for chemical control.