Strong red citrus cochineal (Aonidiella aurantii)

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Sbenny

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There red cochineal (Aonidiella aurantii) is an insect belonging to the order Rhynchotafamily Diaspididaesubfamily Aspidiotinae. Together with cotonello (Planococcus citri) and to cottony cochineal (Iceryaparmisi)L’Aonidiella aurantii and the species of cochineal more harmful to citrus fruits, hence the vulgar name of strong red citrus cochineal (even if there are many tree species, both fruit and ornamental, which it infests).
This variety of cochineal is native to Southeast Asia, but today it is widespread in all citrus-growing areas of the planet, including Italy. In our country it is present mainly in the major islands, that is Sicily and Sardinia, and in the southern regions. In the north it can occasionally attack citrus plants grown in pots.
The control of this parasite is crucial to safeguard citrus production and also the health of the plants.

So let’s see how to recognize its presence, the damage it causes to trees and the biological defense strategies.


Description of the red cochineal


red cochineal

There Aonidiella aurantii it comes in different forms. The mature female is the most visible, about 2 mm in diameter, yellow in color, protected by a hazelnut-colored circular follicle with reddish central exuviae and by a complete and robust ventral veil.


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