CIRCULARS

The Entomology Circular series was established in the early 1960s to be an educational outlet for new agricultural pests, often of regulatory concern. They are primarily created by staff members to discuss newly established pests or pests that would pose threats to Florida’s plant life if established. These Circulars were short reports (often only 2 page) that were printed for distribution to stakeholders and the public. After the original release, the paper copies were used as educational fliers for many years. While some data are out of date, they are historically significant and much of the biological information contained in them are still scientifically valid. With the development of the internet, many were updated and re-released through the University of Florida’s Featured Creatures series. As the internet and digital technology created new ways to disseminate information more rapidly, the Circular series’ original purpose of a quick information release was taken over with DPI’s Pest Alert series that is posted on the DPI’s webpage. However, Pest Alerts are considered short, temporary multi-media postings to be discarded after a period of time. The Circular series continues to function as a more informative and permanent publication record on various pests or arthropods of concern to Florida.

Issue No. 444

Matsucoccus alabamae Morrison was first described from a pine species in Alabama, in 1902 (Morrison 1939). To date, there
is no published record of its occurrence outside of Alabama. Pine trees play a vital role in Florida’s ecosystems and economy
(Proctor and Monroe 2016). In addition to benefitting wildlife and providing attractive landscapes in Florida, pines are also grown
commercially, providing products such as paper, industrial chemicals and lumber. Due to the importance of pine production in
Florida and the fact that several species of Matsucoccus cause considerable damage to pines worldwide, M. alabamae has the
potential to be a pest in Florida (García et al. 2016).

Issue No. 443

Chionaspis pinifoliae (Fitch), pine needle scale, is a common pest of conifers, especially in urban environments and Christmas tree
farms. This insect is considered one of the most serious pests of ornamental pines in the U.S., especially mugo pine and Scotch
pine (Johnson and Lyon, 1991; Miller and Davidson, 2005). In Québec, C. pinifoliae is an emerging pest of Christmas trees, but
is not known to cause significant damage. Although not generally monitored by growers, C. pinifoliae can be an obstacle for
export (Doherty et al., 2018). Morphological and biological similarities between C. pinifoliae and a closely related species, pine
scale, C. heterophyllae Cooley, have led to taxonomic confusion. For example, there is a historical case of misidentification where a
research program focusing on C. pinifoliae was found to have actually worked with C. heterophyllae when voucher specimens were
reexamined (Nielsen and Johnson, 1973).

Issue No. 442

According to the FDACS-DPI database and ScaleNet (García et al., 2016), there are about 34 genera and 90 species of mealybugs in Florida. More than one third of them occur on roots and are easily overlooked during inspection. Phenacoccus sisymbriifolium
Granara de Willink is one of the overlooked root mealybugs in Florida. In general, root mealybugs feed on plant roots by sucking sap from the tissues. In small numbers, they have no obvious effects on plant health. However, the ability for mealybugs to multiply at an exponentially fast rate means they can rapidly transform from a mild problem to a heavy infestation. If the infestation gets too large, the plants are likely to die (Hodgson 2018).

Issue No. 441

Samples of Thysanofiornia leei Williams were submitted by Shannan Webb (FDACS-DPI) on February 28 and April 16, 2019 from
Broward County (E2019-1545, E2019-1961). These were identified as a new U.S. continental record and confirmed by Dr. Gregory
A. Evans (USDA/ APHIS/ PPQ) and Scott Schneider (USDA/ ARS/ SEL). A sample from another location in Broward County was
submitted on May 6, 2019 by Christina Urbina (FDACS-DPI) (E2019-2470) confirming its presence in the county. Three more recent
samples represent new county records: Collier County submitted by Leonora Coleman (FDACS-DPI) on April 30, 2019 (E2019-
2458); Lee County submitted by Terri Jones (USDA) on May 22, 2019 (E2019-2907); and Charlotte County submitted by Matt Brodie
(FDACS-DPI) on June 4, 2019 (E2019-3120). Reevaluating older Florida samples of a closely related species, the longan scale,
Thysanofiorinia nephelii (Maskell), we discovered first instar specimens of T. leei from Broward County (E2004-8090) and Miami-
Dade County (E2005-299) collected 15 years earlier. The longan scale was first reported from Florida in 1996 with two independent
finds in Miami-Dade County. For the next five years, there were a few records of the longan scale’s occurrence in the field (Suh et al. 2007) and it remains a minor pest. The lychee leei scale may have been in Florida at unnoticeable population levels since 2004.

 

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BAMBOO PIT SCALE, ASTEROLECANIUM BAMBUSAE (BOISDUVAL) (HOMOPTERA: COCCOIDEA: ASTEROLECANIIDAE) 2 PAGE

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DARKWINGED FUNGUS GNATS, BRADYSIA SPP., IN FLORIDA GREENHOUSES (DIPTERA: SCIARDIAE) 4 PAGE

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THE ASIATIC CITRUS PSYLLID, DIAPHORINA CITRI KUWAYAMA, (HOMOPTERA: PSYLLIDAE) 4 PAGE

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THE SCOLIID WASPS OF FLORIDA I. INTRODUCTION, BIOLOGY & KEY TO NEARCTIC GENERA (HYMENOPTERA: SCOLIIDAE) 2 PAGE

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EUPTERYXLEAFHOPPER DAMAGE TO LEATHERLEAF FERN (HOMOPTERA: CICADELLOIDEA) 2 PAGE

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