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Cottony Maple Scale

Cottony maple scale continues to be reported from Lincoln and parts north. Silver maples have been heavily infested, and there have been several reports of infestations on honey locust. The honey locust infestations have consisted of two to three scales per foot of branch, which is well below the level at which insecticide application should be needed.

Several areas are reporting the presence as well of the twice-stabbed ladybeetle larvae that feed on cottony maple scale. These larvae look like a mealybug or the scaleís white egg sac, except that it will move when poked. Dave Shetlar, Ohio State University entomologist, reports pupation of the ladybeetle in that state, so the 1/8-inch, roundish, black adults with two red spots on the back should be appearing soon.

Remember, if ladybeetles are present, treatment for the scales is probably not necessary. In any case, donít spray until the reddish pinhead-sized crawlers appear. This should occur when elderberry blooms, according to the book, Coincide, by Don Orton.

Author: Phil Nixon


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