Odermatt Mealybug | Pseudococcus odermatti

California Pest Rating for
Pseudococcus odermatti – Odermatt mealybug
Hemiptera: Pseudococcidae
Pest Rating: A


Initiating Event:

Pseudococcus odermatti is frequently intercepted by CDFA. Currently it has a temporary rating of Q. A pest rating proposal is required to assign a permanent pest rating.

History & Status:

Background: Pseudococcus odermatti is commonly known as odermatt mealybug. Like other species in the genus Pseudococcus, odermatt mealybug can feed on a variety of cultivated plants. Known hosts include: Annonaceae: Sugar apple (Annona squamosa); Araliaceae: Fetsia paper plant (Fatsia japonica), Araceae: Aglaonema spp., Rosaceae: Pyracantha spp., Ebenaceae: Diospros spp., Pittosporaceae: Japanese cheesewood (Pittosporum tobira), Rutaceae: (Citrus aurantium & Citrus latifolia) 1, 4.

Worldwide Distribution: Pseudococcus odermatti is established in Bahamas, Belize, China, Costa Rica, India and Japan. In the United States it is reported from Hawaii and Florida1.

Official Control:  There is no data available for Pseudococcus odermatti, but Pseudococcus spp. are listed as harmful organisms in Dominica, Grenada, Japan, Saint Luci, Taiwan and Panama 3.

California Distribution: Pseudococcus odermatti has never been found in the environment of California.

California Interceptions: Pseudococcus odermatti is regularly found by CDFA’s high risk inspections, border stations, dog teams, and nursery inspections. Between January 1, 2000 and November, 2016 this mealybug was intercepted 94 times, typically on nursery stock and fresh plant parts from Florida and Hawaii2.

The risk Pseudococcus odermatti would pose to California is evaluated below.

Consequences of Introduction:

1) Climate/Host Interaction: Pseudococcus odermatti feeds on a large variety of plants cultivated in California, especial widely planted citrus. It is likely to establish wherever host plants are grown and receives a High (3) in this category.

Evaluate if the pest would have suitable hosts and climate to establish in California: Score: (3)

Low (1) Not likely to establish in California; or likely to establish in very limited areas.

Medium (2) may be able to establish in a larger but limited part of California.

High (3) likely to establish a widespread distribution in California.

2) Known Pest Host Range: Pseudococcus odermatti feeds on seven different families of plants which grown throughout in California1. It has a moderate host range. It receives a Medium (2) in this category.

Evaluate the host range of the pest: Score: (2)

Low (1) has a very limited host range.

Medium (2) has a moderate host range.

High (3) has a wide host range.

3) Pest Dispersal Potential: Most species of Pseudococcus genus are famous for their high reproductive rates. They may spread long distances when host plants are moved. Furthermore, they may be spread by wind or by hitchhiking on clothing, animals, or equipment.

Pseudococcus odermatti receives a High (3) in this category.

Evaluate the natural and artificial dispersal potential of the pest: Score: (3)

Low (1) does not have high reproductive or dispersal potential.

Medium (2) has either high reproductive or dispersal potential.

High (3) has both high reproduction and dispersal potential.

4) Economic Impact: Pseudococcus odermatti is considered an economic pest of several crops that are grown in California and may be expected to lower crop yields and increase crop production costs. If the scale were to enter the state, it may disrupt markets for fresh fruit and nursery stock. It has the potential to trigger loss of markets. Pseudococcus odermatti receives a High (3) in this category.

Evaluate the economic impact of the pest to California using the criteria below:  

Economic Impact:  A B, C

A. The pest could lower crop yield.

B. The pest could lower crop value (includes increasing crop production costs).

C. The pest could trigger the loss of markets (includes quarantines).

D. The pest could negatively change normal cultural practices.

E. The pest can vector, or is vectored, by another pestiferous organism.

F. The organism is injurious or poisonous to agriculturally important animals.

G. The organism can interfere with the delivery or supply of water for agricultural uses.

Economic Impact Score: 3

Low (1) causes 0 or 1 of these impacts.

Medium (2) causes 2 of these impacts.

High (3) causes 3 or more of these impacts.

5) Environmental Impact: Pseudococcus odermatti is not expected to lower biodiversity, disrupt natural communities, or change ecosystem processes. It is not expected to directly impact threatened or endangered species. It can increase production costs to growers if they perform any treatment to control its infestation. It is not expected to have significant impacts on cultural practices, home/urban gardening, or ornamental plantings. It receives a Medium (2) in this category.

Evaluate the Environmental impact of the pest to California using the criteria below:  

Environmental Impact:  D

A. The pest could have a significant environmental impact such as lowering biodiversity, disrupting natural communities, or changing ecosystem processes.

B. The pest could directly affect threatened or endangered species.

C. The pest could impact threatened or by disrupting critical habitats.

D. The pest could trigger additional official or private treatment programs.

E. The pest significantly impacts cultural practices, home/urban gardening or ornamental plantings.

Environmental Impact Score: (2)

Low (1) causes none of the above to occur.

Medium (2) causes one of the above to occur.

High (3) causes two or more of the above to occur.

Consequences of Introduction to California for Odermatt mealybug:  High (13)

Low = 5-8 points

Medium = 9-12 points

High = 13-15 points

6) Post Entry Distribution and Survey Information: Pseudococcus odermatti has never been found in California and receives a Not established (0) in this category.

Evaluate the known distribution in California. Only official records identified by a taxonomic expert and supported by voucher specimens deposited in natural history collections should be considered. Pest incursions that have been eradicated, are under eradication, or have been delimited with no further detections should not be included: Score -0

Not established (0) Pest never detected in California, or known only from incursions.

Low (-1) Pest has a localized distribution in California, or is established in one suitable climate/host area (region).

Medium (-2) Pest is widespread in California but not fully established in the endangered area, or pest established in two contiguous suitable climate/host areas.

High (-3) Pest has fully established in the endangered area, or pest is reported in more than two contiguous or non-contiguous suitable climate/host areas.

Final Score:

The final score is the consequences of introduction score minus the post entry distribution and survey information score: High (13)


Pseudococcus odermatti is commonly intercepted. There have been no formal surveys for this scale in the state. It is therefore possible that it could be present in some locations in California.

Conclusion and Rating Justification:

Pseudococcus odermatti has never been found in the environment of California and its entry to the state has potentially significant economic and environmental impacts. An “A” rating is justified.

  1. Miller & Williams 1997, Downie, D.A. Gullan, P.J. Scale Net. Accessed 12-19-16 http://scalenet.info/catalogue/Pseudococcus%20odermatti/
  2. Pest and Damage Record Database, California Department of Food and Agriculture, Plant Health and Pest Prevention Services. http://phpps.cdfa.ca.gov/user/frmLogon2.asp
  3. USDA Phytosanitary Certificate Issuance & Tracking System (PCIT) Phytosanitary Export Database (PExD).             https://pcit.aphis.usda.gov/pcit/
  4. USDA,  APHIS, Identification Technology Program,  Fact sheet   Accessed on 12-19-16 http://idtools.org/id/scales/factsheet.php?name=7011

Responsible Party:

Javaid Iqbal, California Department of Food and Agriculture; 1220 N Street, Sacramento, CA 95814; Tel. (916) 403-6695; plant.health[@]cdfa.ca.gov.

Comment Period: CLOSED

9/12/17 – 10/27/17*


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Posted by ls