Scale insects are protected or hidden beneath a waxy shell or scale which they secreat over their bodies. Newly-hatched scale are mobile and crawl around on the plant looking for a suitable feeding site. Once a suitable feeding site is found they settle and then become immobile whilst feeding on the plants sap. Scale insects are usually brown/grey being either flat or domed. Some scale insects excrete a sugary liquid called honeydew, which makes the foliage sticky and permits the growth of sooty mould. Scale insects are often mistaken for plant nodules or growths. Species of scale insect that affect outdoor plants are generally present in mid-summer but on indoor plants breeding may be continuous throughout the year.
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