Insect egg case

Asked October 14, 2019, 4:17 PM EDT

I would be grateful to learn if the attached image is that of an insect or spider egg case and if so what insect or spider? This egg case is on a camellia bush and a similar egg case is on our blueberry bush.

Many thanks in advance for your consideration.

Cheers Herbert

District of Columbia County District of Columbia

1 Response

Hi - This looks like Indian wax scale. Scales are small insects that feed on plant sap. This can lead to yellowing, browing, and decline of the plant. Here is more information about soft scales in general.

The first thing to do would be to remove by hand any of these white scales that you see. Pick them off and put them in the trash. The insects produce this white, waxy covering for protection from predator insects, and it even protects them from chemical sprays. The female scale insects lay eggs under the covering in late spring or early summer, usually mid-June in Maryland. The eggs usually hatch in mid-July and emerge from the covering. The young insects are known as 'crawlers' and they move about the plant looking for a place to permanently attach themselves. They then insert their stylet (mouthpart) through the bark and into the vascular system where they suck sap from the plant. The insects are most vulnerable to chemical control during this crawler stage, so it is important that you monitor your plant carefully next summer and be prepared to spray the plant thoroughly with a summer rate of horticultural oil.