Striped Pine Scale – Toumeyella pini
Striped Pine Scale – Toumeyellapini
Common Name: Striped Pine Scale
Latin Name: Toumeyellapini
- The striped pine scale is a soft scale seen on young pine growth. Adult female scale coverings resemble small helmets.
- They are reddish-brown with one or more cream or white stripes running across the center. The color of the scales changes depending on their age and health.
- The adult females’ covers are 14 inches (6.3 mm) long. They are typically seen in bunches on the host tree’s outer twigs.
- This scale’s nymphs or crawlers are tan to orange and can be seen on the twigs and needles of new growth. As it feeds on the bark of pine trees, this insect excretes a sugary liquid known as honeydew.
Striped pine scales damage Scots pine, lodgepole pine, slash pine, pinyon pine, and Austrian pine. Infested trees frequently turn black with sooty mold and lose vitality quickly.
Damages caused by Striped Pine Scale:
Feeding stunts new growth and can cause the needle to drop prematurely. A heavy infestation can damage branches and ruin the beauty of a tree. Since the mid-1980s, infestations have spread over the Front Range from the original infestations in the Denver region. Striped pine scale generates a lot of honeydew, which attracts yellowjacket wasps in the fall and honeybees in the spring. Black sooty mold frequently forms on honeydew secreted by insects, coating twigs and branches.
Life history and habits:
Males emerge as small, winged insects to mate with females in late summer. Because adult males lack mouthparts, they die soon after mating. Striped pine scales spend the winter as fertilized, flat females connected to this season’s growth twigs. Some adult females may also survive the winter. In May and early June, females begin to mature and deposit eggs. Mature females have a diameter of about 1/4 inch and are nearly hemispherical. Eggs hatch beneath the mother’s body, which has faded upward to provide shelter over the eggs. Crawlers appear in late May and early June. A single female may lay hundreds of eggs, which hatch over several weeks. Each year, there is normally one generation.