Field characters

According to Brain (1920a), adult female about 6 mm long (longest specimens reach 8 mm); color, when alive, light green with narrow margin of pale dull green yellow. The dorsum is relatively transparent, giving the insect the color and appearance of the leaf, the green body corresponding with the leaf and the yellowish margin with the midrib or edge of the leaf. Occurring on leaves.

Validation characters

Normally with 2 enlarged, club-shaped or cylindrical stigmatic setae adjacent to each spiracle; stigmatic clefts conspicuous, inner margin sclerotized; without tubular ducts. Other characters: Marginal setae small, cylindrical; dorsal setae cylindrical; legs with tibia and tarsus fused or weakly divided; claw denticle present or absent; claw digitules equal; 1 pair of elongate prevulvar setae (often obscured by anal plates); submarginal tubercles absent; antennae 6- or 7-segmented, 4th segment sometimes partially divided; anal plates with posterior margin about same size as anterior margin; each anal plate with 3 or 4 apical setae, without a subdiscal seta; with 3 subapical setae on each plate; anal fold with 4 fringe setae; stigmatic setae differentiated from marginal setae; multilocular pores normally with 10 or more loculi; multiloculars present in medial areas of abdomen; preopercular pores in mediolateral clusters near junction of thorax and abdomen.


Marsipococcus proteae is similar to M. durbanensis (Brain) by having 2 club-shaped setae adjacent to each spiracle and stigmatic cleft deep and sclerotized. Marsipococcus proteae differs by lacking tubular ducts (present near anal plates on M. durbanensis) and by having peroperucular pores in 2 mediolateral clusters near junction of thorax and abdomen (arranged in conspicuous narrow band anterior of anal plates on M. durbanensis).

U.S. quarantine notes

This species was intercepted 8 times at U. S. ports-of-entry between 1995 and 2012, with specimens originating from The Netherlands, and South Africa. Interceptions were mostly taken on the leaves of Protea and Leucadendron. ScaleNet lists only Protea as a host, and South Africa as the distribution range. No other species of Marsipococcus have been intercepted at a U. S. port-of-entry.

Important references

Brain1920a; DeLott1967b; DeLott1959.

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