For biological control of mealy bugs inside greenhouses, conservatories or heated areas , use the predatory beetle; Cryptolaemus montrouzieri. This ladybird originates from Australia but is widely used across the world as an important form of biological control for mealybugs. Mealybugs attack cacti, succlents and many greenhouse grown plants. They are white in appearance appearing fluffy. A waxy material is produced by the mealybugs and infected plants are soon sticky with sooty moulds often growing on them. Biological or natural pest control of mealybugs is possible with the predatory ladybird; Cryptolaemus montrouzieri.
They are most effective at temperatures between 22-25.c . The adults prefer to eat mealybug eggs and young larvae, whilst their larvae will eat all stages of the mealybug life cycle. Mealybug predator adults will search for prey in greenhouses and conservatories and are effective with large populations of mealybugs. For smaller infestations try using Mealybug predator larvae. Introduce Mealybug predator adults in infested areas at a rate of 2-10 insects per square metre depending on the level of infestation.
It maybe required to repeat treatments with heavy infestations every two weeks until populations of Cryptolaemuscan be seen on the plants. 2-3 weeks after introduction their larvae should be seen in the crop. Do not spray pesticides before or during the use of Mealybug predator adults. Mealybug predators are supplied in a pack of 25 or 500 adults. Release with windows shut.