This past summer we reported scale insects on some Red Mangroves on Abaco. With the help of Dr. Emily Meineke, we recently confirmed the identity of the scale insects as Coconut Scales (Aspidiotus destructor). Coconut scales have been recorded on Red Mangrove previously so it is no surprise that we found them on Abaco. We also found whiteflies which are another type of sap sucking insect. In high densities, both the Coconut scale and Whitefly can harm trees by causing yellowing of leaves, tissue distortion and die back. Fortunately, these organisms were not found in high densities on Abaco so their impacts are likely minimal on mangroves.
If you’re interested in learning more about scale insects, follow Dr. Meineke on twitter and check out her research!