Long-tailed mealy bug Pseudococcus longispinus, photographed by James Castner.

Belongs within: Coccoidea.

The Pseudococcidae include the mealy bugs, named for the thin covering of mealy wax over the body surface of many species. Some species are significant plant pests, such as Pseudococcus longispinus on citrus and the polyphagous P. affinis (Carver et al. 1991). Many pseudococcids exhibit highly specialised symbioses with ants, who tend them for the honeydew they produce. Malaicoccus formicarii is found in association with the ant species Hypoclinea cuspidatus, and is transported by its host ants between suitable feeding sites. Emerging queens of the ant genus Acropyga carry mealybugs in their mandibles in order to establish a new mealybug 'herd' when establishing a new ant colony (Grimaldi & Engel 2005). Species of the genus Rhizoecus are subterranean, feeding on the roots of their host plants.

Characters (from Carver et al. 1991): Female with a combination of dorsal ostioles, ventral circuli, trilocular pores and usually 1-18 pairs of cerarii; anterior and posterior pairs of thoracic spiracles approximately the same size; abdominal spiracles absent; terminal segments of abdomen not fused into pygidium; anal ring often with an outer and an inner row of pores; tubular ducts not cupped at inner end.

    |--Trabutina mannipara GE05
    |--Hippeococcus GE05
    |--Malaicococcus formicarii GE05
    |--Electromyrmococcus GE05
    |--Tympanococcus Williams 1967 GML13
    |--Chlorococcus Beardsley 1971 GML13
    |--Clavicoccus erinaceus Ferris in Zimmerman 1948 GML13
    |--Phyllococcus oahuensis GML13
    |--Melanococcus albizziae CGW91
    |--Australicoccus grevilleae CGW91
    |--*Ripersiella rumicis M27, WEE70 [=Ripersia rumicis M27]
    |--Tridiscus distichlii WEE70
    |--Amonostherium lichtensioides M96
    |--Anisococcus milleri M96
    |--Antoninoides parrotti M96
    |--Ehrhornia cupressi M96
    |--Geococcus coffeae M96
    |--Lachnodiella mexicana M96
    |--Palmicultor palmarum M96
    |--Prorhizoecus atopoporus M96
    |--Pseudantonina texana M96
    |--Radicoccus kelloggi M96
    |--Saccharicoccus sacchari M96
    |--Syrmococcus pecosensis M96
    |--Cryptoripersia arizonensis W87
    |--Mollicoccus Williams 1960 GML13
    |    `--M. guadalcanalanus Williams 1960 GML13
    |--Trionymus M96
    |    |--T. coronus M96
    |    `--T. perrisii K09
    |--Chorizococcus M96
    |    |--C. rostellum M96
    |    `--C. triunfoensis M96
    |--Ferrisia M96
    |    |--F. consobrina M96
    |    `--F. virgata M96
    |--Heliococcus M96
    |    |--H. corralesi M96
    |    `--H. deserticola M96
    |--Porococcus M96
    |    |--P. pergandei M96
    |    `--P. tinctorius M96
    |--Antonina WEE70
    |    |--A. bambusae B88
    |    |--A. graminis [incl. A. indica] C81
    |    `--A. nortoni M96
    |--Rastrococcus GE05
    |    |--R. iceryoides GE05
    |    |--R. invadens MHG04
    |    `--R. spinosus MHG04
    |--Humococcus M96
    |    |--H. atriplicis M96
    |    |--H. hilariae M96
    |    `--H. yenseni M96
    |--Hypogeococcus M96
    |    |--H. boharti M96
    |    |--H. festerianus CGW91
    |    |--H. othnius M96
    |    `--H. spinosus M96
    |--Planococcus S07
    |    |--P. citri A-G91
    |    |--P. lilacinus MHG04
    |    |--P. minor CGW91
    |    `--P. vovae S07
    |--Distichlicoccus M96
    |    |--D. megacirculus W87
    |    |--D. sahuayoensis M96
    |    |--D. salinus M96
    |    |--D. sinaloanus M96
    |    `--D. zacapuensis M96
    |--Spilococcus M96
    |    |--S. eriogoni M96
    |    |--S. larreae M96
    |    |--S. mamillariae M96
    |    |--S. sequoiae M96
    |    `--S. steelii M96
    |--Cataenococcus M96
    |    |--C. cualatensis M96
    |    |--C. ductorum M96
    |    |--C. guatemalensis M96
    |    |--C. ingrandi M96
    |    |--C. larai M96
    |    `--C. olivaceus M96
    |--Dysmicoccus MHG04
    |    |--D. bispinosus M96
    |    |--D. boninsis M96
    |    |--D. brevipes MF07
    |    |--D. grassi M96
    |    |--D. hurdi M96
    |    |--D. mackenziei M96
    |    |--D. neobrevipes MHG04
    |    |--D. pinicolus M96
    |    `--D. texensis M96
    |--Nipaecoccus M96
    |    |--N. aurilanatus B88
    |    |--N. cercidii M96
    |    |--N. filamentosus M96
    |    |--N. filicis M96
    |    |--N. gilli M96
    |    |--N. jonmartini M96
    |    |--N. kosztaraborum M96
    |    |--N. neogaeus M96
    |    |--N. nipae M96
    |    |--N. vastator A-G91
    |    `--N. zapotlanus M96
    |--Paracoccus M96
    |    |--P. alazanensis M96
    |    |--P. baccharidicola M96
    |    |--P. circuliprivis M96
    |    |--P. ferrisi M96
    |    |--P. hamoni M96
    |    |--P. herreni M96
    |    |--P. juniperi M96
    |    |--P. lycopersici M96
    |    |--P. marginatus M96
    |    |--P. mexicanus M96
    |    |--P. oneratus M96
    |    |--P. ordinis M96
    |    |--P. reductus M96
    |    |--P. salviacola M96
    |    |--P. solani M96
    |    |--P. townsendi M96
    |    `--P. villanuevai M96
    |--Pseudococcus Westwood 1840 GML13
    |    |--*P. longispinus (Targioni Tozzetti 1867) [=Dactylopius longispinus] GML13
    |    |--P. adonidum B88
    |    |--P. affinis ZS10
    |    |--P. agavis M96
    |    |--P. anestios Williams 1985 GML13
    |    |--P. calceolariae CGW91 [=Trechocorys calceolariae K08]
    |    |--P. chenopodii Williams 1985 GML13
    |    |--P. citri ZS10
    |    |--P. comstocki M47
    |    |--P. crotonis G17
    |    |--P. elisae M96
    |    |--P. epidendrus Williams 1985 GML13
    |    |--P. eremosus Williams 1985 GML13
    |    |--P. gahani A71
    |    |--P. maritima A71
    |    |--P. markharveyi Gullan in Gullan, Moir & Leng 2013 GML13
    |    |--P. microcirculus M96
    |    |--P. nipae F37
    |    |--P. njalensis BW64
    |    `--P. viburni M96
    |--Rhizoecus M96
    |    |--R. americanus M96
    |    |--R. apizacos M96
    |    |--R. associatus M96
    |    |--R. cyperalis M96
    |    |--R. disjunctus M96
    |    |--R. falcifer M96
    |    |--R. gracilis M96
    |    |--R. leucosomus M96
    |    |--R. macgregori M96
    |    |--R. menkei M96
    |    |--R. mexicanus M96
    |    |--R. neomexicanus M96
    |    |--R. neostangei M96
    |    |--R. ovatus M96
    |    |--R. pauciporus M96
    |    |--R. polyporus M96
    |    |--R. solani M96
    |    |--R. spinipes M96
    |    |--R. stangei M96
    |    `--R. tropicalis M96
    `--Phenacoccus LS96 [Phenacoccinae KP01]
         |--P. bahiae C01
         |--P. calcitectus Cockerell 1901 C01
         |--P. capensis M96
         |--P. defectus M96
         |--P. eremicus M96
         |--P. eschscholtziae M96
         |--P. franseriae M96
         |--P. gossypii M96
         |--P. gregosus M96
         |--P. helianthi M96
         |--P. herreni M99
         |--P. hurdi M96
         |--P. incomptus M96
         |--P. madeirensis TKC07
         |--P. manihoti LS96
         |--P. mexicanus M96
         |--P. parvus M96
         |--P. psidiarum M96
         |--P. solani M96
         |--P. solenopsis M96
         |--P. spiniferus Hempel 1901 H01
         `--P. yuccae [incl. P. yuccae var. barberi] C01

*Type species of generic name indicated


[A-G91] Al-Gboory, J. I. 1991. Biology of oriental citrus mite, Eutetranychus orientalis (Klein) on different citrus species. In: Dusbábek, F., & V. Bukva (eds) Modern Acarology: Proceedings of the VIII International Congress of Acarology, held in České Budĕjovice, Czechoslovakia, 6–11 August 1990 vol. 2 pp. 607–611. SPB Academic Publishing: The Hague.

[A71] Askew, R. R. 1971. Parasitic Insects. Heinemann Educational Books: London.

[BW64] Booth, C., & J. M. Waterston. 1964. Calonectria rigidiuscula. C.M.I. Descriptions of Pathogenic Fungi and Bacteria 21.

[B88] Bouček, Z. 1988. Australasian Chalcidoidea (Hymenoptera): A biosystematic revision of genera of fourteen families, with a reclassification of species. CAB International: Wallingford (UK).

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[CGW91] Carver, M., G. F. Gross & T. E. Woodward. 1991. Hemiptera (bugs, leafhoppers, cicadas, aphids, scale insects etc.) In: CSIRO. The Insects of Australia: A textbook for students and research workers 2nd ed. vol. 1 pp. 429–509. Melbourne University Press: Carlton (Victoria).

[C01] Cockerell, T. D. A. 1901. Contributions from the New Mexico Biological Station.—XI. New and little-known insects from New Mexico. Annals and Magazine of Natural History, series 7, 7: 333–337.

[F37] Ford, C. 1937. Minutes of the 481st regular meeting of the Entomological Society of Washington. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 39 (4): 88–90.

[G17] Girault, A. A. 1917. New Javanese Hymenoptera. Privately published (reprinted Gordh, G., A. S. Menke, E. C. Dahms & J. C. Hall. 1979. The privately printed papers of A. A. Girault. Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 28: 59–71).

[GE05] Grimaldi, D., & M. S. Engel. 2005. Evolution of the Insects. Cambridge University Press: New York.

[GML13] Gullan, P. J., M. L. Moir & M. C. Leng. 2013. A new species of mealybug (Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae) from critically endangered Banksia montana in Western Australia. Records of the Western Australian Museum 28 (1): 13–20.

[H01] Hempel, A. 1901. Descriptions of Brazilian Coccidae. Annals and Magazine of Natural History, series 7, 7: 110–125.

[K08] Kirkaldy, G. W. 1908. A catalogue of the Hemiptera of Fiji. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 33: 345–391, pl. 4.

[K09] Köhler, G. 2009. Heuschrecken (Saltatoria) und Ohrwürmner (Dermaptera) im Immissionsgebiet des Düngemittelwerkes Steudnitz/Thüringen—eine Langzeitstudie (1978–2001). Mauritiana 20 (3): 601–646.

[KP01] Koteja, J., & G. O. Poinar Jr. 2001. A new family, genus, and species of scale insect (Hemiptera: Coccinea: Kukaspididae, new family) from Cretaceous Alaskan amber. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 103 (2): 356–363.

[LS96] Levins, R., & B. B. Schultz. 1996. Effects of density dependence, feedback and environmental sensitivity on correlations among predators, prey and plant resources: Models and practical implications. Journal of Animal Ecology 65: 802–812.

[MHG04] Maynard, G. V., J. G. Hamilton & J. F. Grimshaw. 2004. Quarantine—phytosanitary, sanitary and incursion management: an Australian entomological perspective. Australian Journal of Entomology 43 (3): 318–328.

[M47] Mayr, E. 1947. Ecological factors in speciation. Evolution 1: 263–288.

[M96] Miller, D. R. 1996. Checklist of the scale insects (Coccoidea: Homoptera) of Mexico. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 98 (1): 68–86.

[M99] Moraes, G. J. de. 1999. Pest status of the cassava green mite in Brazil and strategies for its control. In: Needham, G. R., R. Mitchell, D. J. Horn & W. C. Welbourn (eds) Acarology IX vol. 2. Symposia pp. 287–291. Ohio Biological Survey: Columbus (Ohio).

[MF07] Moraes, G. J. de, & C. H. W. Flechtmann. 2007. Phytophagous mites of tropical crops in eastern South America. In: Morales-Malacara, J. B., V. M. Behan-Pelletier, E. Ueckermann, T. M. Pérez, E. G. Estrada-Venegas & M. Badii (eds) Acarology XI: Proceedings of the International Congress pp. 279–288. Instituto de Biología and Faculdad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Sociedad Latinoamericana de Acarología: México.

[M27] Myers, J. G. 1927. On the nomenclature of New Zealand Homoptera. Transactions and Proceedings of the New Zealand Institute 57: 685–690.

[S07] Ślipiński, A. 2007. Australian Ladybird Beetles (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae): Their biology and classification. Australian Biological Resources Study: Canberra.

[TKC07] Tixier, M.-S., S. Kreiter & B. Cheval. 2007. Vineyard colonisation by predaceous mites (Acari: Phytoseiidae) living in surrounding vegetation. A three year study in the south of France. In: Morales-Malacara, J. B., V. M. Behan-Pelletier, E. Ueckermann, T. M. Pérez, E. G. Estrada-Venegas & M. Badii (eds) Acarology XI: Proceedings of the International Congress pp. 475–487. Instituto de Biología and Faculdad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Sociedad Latinoamericana de Acarología: México.

[W87] Walter, D. E. 1987. Belowground arthropods of semiarid grasslands. In: J. L. Capinera (ed.) Integrated Pest Management on Rangeland: A shortgrass prairie perspective pp. 271–290. Westview Press, Inc.: Boulder (Colorado).

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Last updated: 8 February 2020.

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