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Avocado Scale

Scientific Name
Fiorinia fioriniae
Scientific Author
(Targioni Tozzetti)
(Hemiptera: Diaspididae)
Pest Status
0 Unknown
0 Unknown
0 NZ - Unknown
0 NZ - Unknown

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Diagnostic Images

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Diagnostic Images (1)
Diagnostic Notes
Description from Williams & Watson (1988)

Female scale about 1.5 mm long, elongate, yellow-brown, flat, exuviae terminal. Male scale whitish, smaller than female scale.

Adult female on microscope slides elongate, sides subparallel, head rounded, without interantennal process; pygidium triangular. Pygidium with well-developed median lobes, forming a distinct notch at apex, strongly divergent and zygotic. 2nd lobes prominent, with inner and outer lobules. Gland spines arranged singly on margins. Marginal macroducts large, numbering 3 or 4 on each side. Dorsal ducts smaller than marginal ducts, represented by a few in submedian area at base of pygidium.

Ventral surface with perivulvar pores present in 5 elongate groups. A few duct tubercles present on margins of mesothorax, metathorax and abdominal segment I. Antennae conical, each with a single seta. Anterior spiracles each with a small group of disc pores.


Fiorinia fioriniae has three generations per year. Eggs are laid in May, July and August (Kuwana, 1911). Johnson & Lyon (1976) indicated overlapping generations in the southern U.S. There are few reports dealing with the life cycle of palm fiorinia scale. Johnson and Lyon (1976) indicate overlapping generations in the southern U.S. Murakami (1970) states that it has 3 generations annually in Japan with eggs laid in May, July, and August. (Miller & Davidson, 2005).


Adult female elliptical, shield-shaped, thin; translucent, brownish yellow to orange-brown, lateral margins slightly curved; 1-1.3 mm in length. First exuviae terminal, pale yellow, projecting partly beyond the second exuviae. The second exuviae covers the insect entirely. The thin waxy secretionary cover extends over the 2nd exuviae and slightly beyond the margin of the 2nd exuviae (Dekle, 1965c).


Fiorinia fioriniae can be identified by its head without a tubercle or fleshy process between the antennae; pygidium with usually only 3 or sometimes 4, large marginal ducts in the adult female (Ferris, 1937).

Economic Importance & Control

Miller & Davidson (1990) list this insect as a serious and widespread pest. The palm fiorinia scale is regarded as a pest of avocado (Williams & Watson 1988, Perez Guerra 1986, Cohic 1958), palms (Hodgson and Hilburn 1991, Dekle 1977), tea (Nagarkatti and Sankaran 1990), and ornamentals (Dekle 1977). Beardsley and González (1975) consider this scale to be one of 43 serious armored scale pests, and Miller and Davidson (1990) consider it to be a serious world pest.


COLEOPTERA Coccinellidae: Microweisea sp., Rhyzobius pulchellus.

HYMENOPTERA Aphelinidae: Aphytis chrysomphali, Aspidiophagus lounsburyi, Aspidiotiphagus citrinus, Aspidiotiphagus citrinus agilior, Aspidiotiphagus lounsburyi, Encarsia citrina, Hispaniella lauri, Signiphora sp., Mymaridae: Allaptus aurantii, Dicopus citri.

THYSANOPTERA Thripidae: Karnyothrips flavipes.

General Remarks

Detailed description and illustration by Balachowsky (1954e).


Gill 1997: 144; Williams & Watson 1988: 115 (female); Chou 1982: 105 (female); Howell 1977: 836 (first instar); Gerson & Zor 1973: 516 (female); Danzig 1971d: 841 (female); Beardsley 1966: 532 (female); Takagi 1961: 41 (female); McKenzie 1956: 32 (female); Balachowsky 1954e: 303 (female); Ferris 1942: SIV-446:54 (female); Fullaway 1932: 96 (female); Kuwana 1925b: 3 (female); MacGillivray 1921: 374 (female); Robinson 1917: 18 (female); Leonardi 1906c: 18 (female); Green 1896e: 93 (female).

More Information
Specimen Contact
New Zealand Arthropod Collection
Rhode, B.E. & Crosby, T.K.
02/07/2013 10:43 AEST
Last Updated
30/03/2014 23:48 AEST
Rhode, B.E. & Crosby, T.K. (2013) Avocado Scale (Fiorinia fioriniae) Updated on 3/30/2014 11:48:35 PM Available online: PaDIL -
Image Use
Free for use under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0)