scale insect noun
: any of numerous small prolific homopterous insects (superfamily Coccoidea) that have winged males, wingless scale-covered females attached to the host plant, and young that suck the juices of plants and some of which are serious pests
First Known Use of SCALE INSECT
scale insect noun (Concise Encyclopedia)
Any member of several families of sap-sucking insects (order Homoptera) whose bodies are covered by a waxy shell (the scale). The eggs are protected by the female's body or scale or a waxy filamentous mass. Scale insects may attack any part of a plant, but each species is host-specific. Many species are serious plant pests; others have commercial value. The lac insect is used in a red dye and in shellac. Cochineal, a red dyestuff, consists of the dried, pulverized bodies of females of the species Dactylopius coccus. See also cottony-cushion scale, San Jose scale.
Learn More About SCALE INSECT
Seen & Heard
What made you want to look up scale insect? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).