Mealybug destroyer

In a butterfly house.

Cryptomaelus montrouzieri (Mulsant, 1853) Edit

Arthropods (Arthropoda)----Insects (Insecta)----Beetles (Coleoptera)----Polyphaga----Cucujoidea-----Ladybirds (Coccinellidae)-----Scymninae-----Scymini----Cryptomaelus-----C. montrouzieri

This species is native to Australia and they were proved to be very efficient at controlling mealybug and scale insect populations, and are used widely today and can be bought from some garden suppliers. They were first imported to the United states in 1891 in California to control Citrus mealybugs. You are probably most like to encounter these in "Butterfly houses", which are those buildings with tropical butterflies inside flying around, they are used there for controlling pests on the plants. The larvae are strange and have a mass of white, long tangly bits. This species is also known as the Mealybug ladybird or the Mealybug predator.  In Alberta they can be found in greenhouses where they help control mealybugs and scale insects, on occasion an escaped individual may appear outside but the winters are too cold for these to brrrreed breed.


This blurry photo is the larva.

Mealybug destroyer2

Also in a butterfly house.