Other common names:
Mealybug, couch mealy bug, rhodes grass scale.
Mealybug adults are globular in shape, dark brown legless creatures about 3 mm in diameter; They are covered with a white cottony secretion and are found attached to the under the leaf sheaths near the nodes within the turf canopy and upper roots of the turf grass (Shedley, 1963). The white cottony waxy cover has a "mealy" appearance, hence the name.
Susceptible Turf: Warm-season turfgrass including green couch, hybrid green couch, hybrid bermudagrass, blue couch and buffalograss. However, damage is limited on buffalograss as the pest does not seem to favour this grass species. Mealy bug is commonly seen on rhodes grass and is called rhodes grass scale.
Infected lawns become unthrifty, giving the appearance of lacking fertiliser and water; root development is generally poor and where heavy infestation occurs, leaves may be small and runner development stunted (Shedley, 1963).
Shedley, D.G. (1963) Inspect Pests of Lawns, Journal of Agriculture, Vol. 4, No. 9, pp. 565 - 567.
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