Crow’s Nest: a good year for the Citrus Flatid Planthopper

July 12, 2012

This year there are tons of cottony, white masses on the stems of plants, from trees and shrubs to wildflowers. I don’t know if it was the mild winter or there is some other reason for the remarkable rise of the population of these little insect colonies—but you can’t help but notice how much there is this year.

You can plainly see an adult insect on this one, but the cottony mass also contains several nymphs of the citrus flatid planthopper (Metcalfa pruinosa).

I have seen the cottony masses on walnut and tulip poplar trees, but even more on multiflora rose and stinging nettle. Here’s a closeup of the adult in the first photo:

Posted by Daniel Barringer on July 12, 2012.