Mealybugs have flattened, oval bodies that are covered with white, powdery wax, which may extend from the body. Adult females are 2-7 mm long; nymphs are small and indistinct. Adults and immatures suck plant sap and weaken plants when they occur in large numbers. Mealybugs are serious pests of houseplants. They occur as white, cottony, or waxy forms on the underside of leaves, on stems, and particularly in the angle whereleaves are attached to stems. Cottony masses thatcontain eggs may also be present, but some species bear live young.

Longtailed mealybug, Pseudococcus longispinus Female and nymph forms are about3 mm long, oval, and with a white, waxy coating. Adult females have long, white anal filaments, which are often as long as or longer than the body. Females produce live young. Populations of this insect can increase rapidly when conditions are suitable, and plants decline from the feeding of adults and nymphs. This species is cosmopolitan. Itis common in greenhouses, and itis a pest on a variety of houseplants.

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