Saissetia miranda (Cockerell & Parrott)



Common name

Mexican black scale

Field characters

Body oval to round; convex in cross section in older females; body light pink with translucent areas in young females, as specimens mature becoming gray and black; all stages with raised areas forming an "H" on dorsum; with small areas of clear wax on dorsum; without an ovisac; hemispherical body forms a cavity under female where eggs are laid. Occurring on leaves and stems.

Validation characters

Marginal setae broadly fimbriate; anal plates with conspicuous discal seta; discal seta fimbriate; tibio-tarsus articulated, with sclerosis; ventral submarginal tubular ducts with narrow filament; derm with areolations in older females. Other characters: Dorsal tubular ducts absent; with numerous submarginal dome-shaped tubercles; each anal plate with 3 or 4 apical setae and no subdiscal seta; with 3 subapical setae on each plate; anal fold with 5 to 8 fringe setae; ventral tubular ducts restricted to submarginal areas; multilocular pores normally with 10 loculi; multiloculars present in vulvar area forward to segment 2; multilocular pores anterior of anterior spiracle predominantly with 5 loculi, about same size as pores laterad of anterior spiracle; claw without denticle; claw digitules equal; 3 pairs of prevulvar setae (posterior pair often obscured by anal plates); stigmatic setae differentiated from other marginal setae, middle seta longer than lateral setae; anal plates with posterior margin about equal to or slightly longer than length of anterior margin; antennae usually 8-segmented; preopercular pores conspicuous, restricted to area anterior of anal plates.


Saissetia miranda is similar to S. neglecta by having a disc seta on anal plates, fimbriate marginal setae, and areolate derm. Saissetia miranda differs by having tibio-tarsus articulated and with sclerosis, and more marginal setae between anterior spiracular furrows (S. neglecta has tibio-tarsus non-articulated and without sclerosis, and fewer marginal setae between anterior spiracular furrows).

U.S. quarantine notes

This species was intercepted at U. S. ports-of-entry 141 times on a variety of hosts between 1995 and 2012, with specimens originating from Bahamas, Brazil, Cameroon, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Grenada, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Jamaica, Mexico, The Netherlands, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Pakistan, Peru, The Philippines, Puerto Rico, South Korea, St. Maarten, St. Vincent and Grenadines, Thailand, The U.S. Virgin Islands, and Venezuela. We also have examined specimens taken in quarantine from Antigua (Mangifera); Argentina (Ficus, Vitis); Australia (Citrus); Bahamas (Citrus, Hibiscus, Nerium, Psidium, Terminalia); Bermuda (Amaryllis, Gossypium, Nerium, Populus); The British Virgin Islands (Bryophyllum); Colombia (Musa); Costa Rica (Dieffenbachia, orchid, Psidium); Cuba (Abelmoschus, Annona, Ficus, Litchi, Mangifera, Nerium, Pithecolobium, Plumeria, Psidiuim, Solanum, Terminalia, Thunbergia); Dominica (Mangifera); Dominican Republic (Calotropus, Casuarina, Citrus, Dieffenbachia, Ficus, Mangifera, Persea, Psidium, Senecio); Ecuador (Alpinia, Citrus); El Salvador (Erythrina, Gardenia); Grenada (Cajanus, Psidium); Guatemala (unknown host); Guadeloupe (Cordia, Mangifera); Guam (Barringtonia); Guyana (Lycaste, Zizyphus); Haiti (Mangifera); Honduras (Ficus, Gardenia, Mangifera, orchid, Schefflera); India (Murraya, Nerium); Jamaica (Blighia, Harrisia, Mangifera, Momordica, Musa, Thunbergia, Vitis); Japan (Anthurium, Fatsia); Johnston Island (Hibiscus); Korea (Hibiscus); Mexico (Bryophyllum, Casimiroa, Chrysanthemum, Citrus, Cryophytum, Dianthus, Dieffenbachia, Ficus, Gardenia, Hibiscus, Jacaranda, Kalanchoe, Mangifera, Musa, Nerium, Psidium, Punica, Reseda, Tecoma, Zingiber); Panama (Cola, Terminalia); Nevis (cactus); Pakistan (Psidium); The Philippines (Mangifera); Puerto Rico (Mangifera, Punica, Sterculia); Samoa (Gardenia); South Africa (Euphorbia); St. Croix (Calyptracordia); St. John (Gossypium); St. Martin (Citrus); St. Thomas (Cajanus); Tahiti (Erythrina); Thailand (Citrus, Durio, Nephelium, Psidium); Trinidad (Mangifera); Venezuela (Nerium, Tabebuia); The U.S. Virgin Islands (Hibiscus). ScaleNet includes hosts in over 30 plant families, and distribution records include all zoogeographic regions. No species in the genus Saissetia other than S. coffeae (Walker), S. miranda, S. neglecta De Lotto,and S. oleae oleae (Olivier) have been intercepted at U. S. ports-of-entry.

Important references

Gill1988; Granar1999; HamonWi1984; WilliaWa1990.

Scalenet catalog and citation list

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  Saissetia miranda   Illustration by R. J. Gill

Saissetia miranda
Illustration by R. J. Gill

  Saissetia miranda  
 Photo by R. J. Gill

Saissetia miranda

Photo by R. J. Gill

  Saissetia miranda

Saissetia miranda