Common name

Orchid mealybug

Field characters

Body oval, pink; covered by thin layer of white wax but allowing body segmentation to be visible; small cottony ovisac produced beneath body, enclosing yellow eggs; with 17 pairs of curved, lateral filaments, becoming progressively longer posteriorly, caudal pair about 1/3rd length of body. Occurring on roots of host but moving to foliage when infestations are heavy.

Validation characters

Circulus small, round, not divided by intersegmental line; translucent pores restricted to hind tibiae; large discoidal pores associated with eye; multiloculars normally restricted to segments VI, VII, and VIII, rarely on anterior abdomen and thorax; antennae 8-segmented.


Pseudococcus microcirculus is similar to Pseudococcus dendrobiorum by having few multiloculars on abdomen and few dorsal oral-rim tubular ducts. Pseudococcus microcirculus can be distinguished (characters of P. dendrobiorum are in parentheses) by having short dorsal setae (long); discoidal pores associated with eye (not associated with eye); and translucent pores on hind tibia only (femur and tibia).

U.S. quarantine notes

This species was intercepted at U. S. ports-of-entry 5 times between 1995 and 2012, with specimens originating from Brazil, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and Zambia. We also have examined specimens taken in quarantine from Antigua (BWI)(orchid); Bahamas (Phais); Barbados (Phaelanopsis); Belgium (Cattleya); Brazil (Laelia); Colombia (Oncidium); Costa Rica (Oncidium); Cuba (Epidendrum, Lycaste, Oncidium); Domican Republic (Cyrtopodium); England (Odontoglossum); Guatemala (Cattleya, Epidendrum, Oncidium, Philodendron); Haiti (orchid); Honduras (orchid); Jamaica (Broughtonia, Vanda); Mexico (Galeandra, Odontoglossum, orchid); Nicaragua (Epidendrum); Panama (Aspasia, Maxillaria); Trinidad and Tobago (Caularthron, Epidendrum); Venezuela (Cattleya). ScaleNet lists hosts in Cactaceae and 26 genera of Orchidaceae. It is most commonly intercepted on orchids. ScaleNet distribution records for P. microcirculus include Mexico and The United States of America (California, Florida and Maryland) in the Nearctic zoogeographic region; Belgium, Denmark, France, Sicily and United Kingdom (England) in the Palaearctic region, and several countries in the Neotropical region. Several species of Pseudococcus other than P. aurantiacus Williams, P. baliteus Lit, P. calceolariae (Maskell), P. comstocki (Kuwana), P. cryptus Hempel , P. dendrobiorum, P. elisae Borchsenius, P. jackbeardsleyi Gimpel & Miller, P. landoi (Balachowsky), P. longispinus (Targioni Tozzetti), P. lycopodii Beardsley, P. maritimus (Ehrhorn), P. microcirculus McKenzie, P. nakaharai Gimpel & Miller, P. odermatti Miller & Williams, P. philippinicus Williams, P. pithecellobii Gimpel & Miller, P. soleneydos Miller & Gimpel and P. viburni (Signoret) have been taken at U. S. ports-of-entry including: P. agavis MacGregor (Mexico, on Agave); P. apodemus Williams (The Philippines, on Fortunella and Mangifera); P. apomicrocirculus Gimpel and Miller (Mexico, on orchids); P. apoplanus Williams (India, on orchids); P. chenopodii Williams (Australia, on Brunia); P. concavocerarii James (Somalia, on Euphorbia); P. donrileyi Gimpel and Miller (Mexico, on Citrus; Puerto Rico, on Melicoccus); P. eucalypticus Williams (Australia, on Eucalyptus and Chamelaucium); P. gilbertensis Beardsley (Guam, on Dracaena; The Philippines, on Citrus); P. importatus McKenzie (Australia, Brazil, Britain, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Jamaica, Madagascar, Mexico, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, The Philippines, South Africa, Trinidad, and Venezuela, on orchids); P. neomaritimus Beardsley (Mexico, on Citrus, Psidium, and Punica); P. neomicrocirculus Gimpel and Miller (Costa Rica, Guatemala and Venezuela, on orchids); P. orchidicola Takahashi (Kwajalein, Marshall, Samoa, and Tonga, on Alocasia, Dendrobium and Pandanus); P. peregrinabundus Borchsenius (Ecuador, on Musa); P. saccharicola Takahashi (Vietnam, on Saccharum); P. sociabilis (Brazil, on Annona, Cattleya, Carica, Hedera, Hippeastrum, Dahlia, Oncidium, Solanum and Zygopetalum); and P. solomonensis Williams (Micronesia and Palau, on Musa and Piper).

Important references

McKenz1967; WilliaGr1992; GimpelMi1996.

Scalenet catalog and citation list

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