Appearance: There are many different types of Soft Scales. Throughout Florida, there are several types, including; Purple Scale, Fern Scale, Citrus Snow Scale, Florida Red Scale, Caribbean Black Scale, and several others. Scales are very small, approximately 1/8”-1/4” in length. Some species are solely female, meaning that a male Scale is not needed for reproductive purposes. The female Scale is wingless and is usually round in shape. The male Scale do have wings.
Location and Behavior Patterns: Soft Scales are a year-round problem throughout Florida, mainly because they thrive in warm temperatures. They feed on a variety of plants, including ornamental shrubs and landscaped trees. Scales can be found feeding on various parts of plants, trees, and shrubs. They can do significant damage to the plants that they have decided to infest, and treating them as soon as they are discovered is important for the health of the plant. Soft Scales spread a sticky substance, called honeydew, which makes them more difficult to remove them from their host plant.
Treatment: Rubbing alcohol can be used in order to remove the Soft Scales from plants, but you may also need to use a brush or scraper, in order to get them completely removed. Insecticides are also effective for treating this type of pest.
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