mealy·​bug | \ ˈmē-lē-ˌbəg How to pronounce mealybug (audio) \

Definition of mealybug

: any of a family (Pseudococcidae) of scale insects that have a white cottony or waxy covering and are destructive pests especially of fruit trees

Examples of mealybug in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

In the 1980s, wasps were responsible for rescuing $2 billion of agricultural profits in Africa from a scourge of cassava mealybugs. Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonian, "Five Real Life Wasp Superpowers Not in Ant-Man and the Wasp," 22 Mar. 2018 Check for mealybugs, billbugs and nematodes in zoysia lawns and treat as needed. 23. Tom Maccubbin,, "July in the garden," 30 June 2018 Lady Beetles Adult lady beetles eat aphids, mites, and mealybugs, and their hungry larvae do even more damage to garden pests. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "10 Insects You Should Actually Want Around Your Plants," 11 May 2016 Check for summer pests of mealybugs and scale insects; control with natural sprays 85. Tom Maccubbin,, "July in the garden," 30 June 2018 Lacewings Both adult lacewings and their larvae eat aphids, caterpillars, mealybugs, scales, thrips, and whiteflies. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "10 Insects You Should Actually Want Around Your Plants," 11 May 2016 Pests controlled: Yellow traps attract whiteflies, fruit flies, male winged scales, leafhoppers, fungus gnats, midges, male winged mealybugs and leafminers, thrips, psyllids, and winged aphids. The Editors Of Organic Life, Good Housekeeping, "The 7 Best Organic Pest Control Techniques For Your Garden," 18 Dec. 2017 Another easy way to reduce aphid, mealybug and whitefly populations on sturdy plants is to knock them off with a strong spray of water in the morning. Debbie Arrington, sacbee, "What’s bugging his tree?," 22 Dec. 2017 Recent tests by the Louisiana State University AgCenter indicate the tiny sap-sucking pest, known as a scale or mealybug, has little interest in sugar cane, one of Louisiana's most important agricultural products. Tristan Baurick,, "Louisiana coast's insect invader has no taste for sugar cane," 30 Aug. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'mealybug.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of mealybug

1824, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about mealybug

Statistics for mealybug

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for mealybug

The first known use of mealybug was in 1824

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on mealybug

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with mealybug Encyclopedia article about mealybug

Comments on mealybug

What made you want to look up mealybug? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


showing great care, attention, and effort

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Finance Words Quiz

  • a-piggy-bank
  • The etymology of mortgage is related most closely to which two words?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!