Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds - Online edition

Pacific Pests, Pathogens, Weeds & Pesticides

Hibiscus lesser snow scale (346)

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  • Widespread distribution. On fruit trees, shrubs and ornamentals, e.g., citrus, hibiscus, coconut, mango, and oil palm, but usually under biological control.
  • Sucks sap from leaves, stems and fruit, weakening plants and causing distortions.
  • Eggs laid under cover or 'armour', hatching to produce 'crawlers' (nymphs); these moult becoming females, up to 2.5 mm long, mussel-shaped, white to light brown, or males, shorter, narrower, and snow-white. Males become tiny fly-like insects, with wings; they are short-lived.
  • Spread by crawlers walking, or carried by wind, vehicles, animals, birds, on clothes, and the trade in plants.
  • Natural enemies: ladybird beetles, parasitoid wasps (Aspidiotiphagus, Aphytis and others).
  • Cultural control: check nursery stock is free from infestation; if present, prune; wide spacing preventing leaves touching and crawlers moving between trees.
  • Chemical control: use lime sulphur or wettable sulphur, leaving 30 days if spraying oils (READ INSTRUCTIONS); alternatively, spot-spray infestations with soap solution, horticultural or white oils (see Fact Sheet no. 56); avoid malathion and synthetic pyrethroids - they will kill natural enemies.
Common Name

Lesser snow scale, hibiscus snow scale

Scientific Name

Pinnaspis strachani

 AUTHOR Grahame Jackson
1Information from Swaine G (1971) Agricultural Zoology in Fiji. Her Majesty's Stationery Office. London; and CABI (2008) Pinnaspis strachani (lesser snow scale) Crop Protection Compendium. (; and from Pinnaspis strachani (Cooley) (1992) Crop Knowledge Master University of Hawaii, Manoa, College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources. ( Photo 2 MAF Plant Health & Environment Laboratory (2011) Lesser Snow Scale (Pinnaspis strachani): PaDIL - (

Produced with support from the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research under project PC/2010/090: Strengthening integrated crop management research in the Pacific Islands in support of sustainable intensification of high-value crop production, implemented by the University of Queensland and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community. 
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