The nymphs and females cause damage to host plants with their piercing-sucking mouthparts which they use to suck sap and remove nutrients. As a result, the plants often become stunted, distorted or yellowed and show reduced vigour. They excrete honeydew which provides a medium for the growth of black, sooty mould fungi. Black sooty mould fungi are detrimental to plants because they cover leaves, thus reducing photosynthesis and inducing plant stress. Stick and fouled flowers are unmarketable, leading to losses in revenues.
An Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programme involving monitoring of pest population, cultural applications, practices, biological control and insecticide applications.
Mealybug Life Cycle