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Mealybug Destroyers (Cryptolaemus montrouzieri) is a small black ladybug with an orange head, measuring 3-5 mm. The larvae are white and filamentous, closely resembling a woolly adult mealybug. Adult and larvae are predators and feed on mealybugs, armoured scales and certain species of aphids. The adult and young larvae prefers consume Mealybugs eggs and older larvae will eat mealybug at all stage.
Mealybug Destroyer is the biological agent the most used in the fight against mealybugs (e.g. Planococcus citri and Pseudococcus spp.). Cryptolaemus is able to establish itself in greenhouse crops but it seems to have a preference for green wall, high plant composition and diversified arrangements in some plants collection and educational greenhouses. This ladybug can control several species of mealybug. However, it needs the presence of oviparous species to be able to reproduce, since females lay their eggs directly in mealybug cottony egg-masses. Cryptolaemus montrouzieri can be sensitive to the use of pesticides and may attempt to flee if pesticides are detected.
|General||2 to 5 adults||per m2||as needed||as needed|
|Mature fruit tree||0,2 à 0,5 adults||per m2||as needed||as needed|
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Phytoseiulus persimilis odours reduce egg-laying by 22% (even after the predator is gone).