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Pest Information

Bellissima Whitefly

Bellissima Whitefly

  • Latin Name: Trialeurodes bellissima
  • Common Name: Bellissima Whitefly
  • Latin Family Name: Aleyrodidae
  • Other Names: N/A

Pest Details

Bellissima Whitefly

Origin:

Possibly native to the U.S. in oak woodlands.

Biology:

A close relative of the more important Greenhouse Whitelfy, this species attacks a much narrower range of host plants. While the greenhouse whitefly has been recorded from well over 300 different host plants the Bellissima Whitefly is known only from species of oaks, and is of little importance to the health of the tree. Females deposit up to 400 eggs in their lifetime, averaging about 25 eggs per day, in small groups that often are arranged in a circular pattern and usually on the lower surface of the leaf. Each egg is attached to the end of a short stalk. Nymphs are mobile in the first instar, but lose their legs become sessile and feed in one place in the next nymph stages, covering themselves with a waxy layer. The nymph stages take about 1 month to reach the immobile pupa stage. All stages feed on the plants

Identification:

The adult has the typical powdery white appearance and holds the wings slightly roof-like over the top of the abdomen while at rest. The nymphs are distinctive, have a long fringe of waxy filaments surrounding the entire margin of the body except for the anterior end, which has no fringe at all. First instars are nearly clear and colorless, with color changing to yellow as the nymph matures.

Characteristicts Important to Control:

Control will generally not be necessary due to low level infestations and the vigor of most oaks. If infestations are heavy, or if the resulting honeydew is a nuisance, a systemic such as imidacloprid will provide some effectiveness. Horticultural oils can be applied to smother the nymph stages, concentrating on the lower surfaces of the leaves where the majority of the feeding is done.

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