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Mealybug destroyer (Cryptolaemus montrouzieri) A ladybug larva that resembles a nudibranch and is a voracious scale bug eater. Exhibiting aggressive mimicry to resemble it&#039;s prey. Exploring the outer branches of an endemic Allocasuarina. One of about a dozen in a local nature reserve. (Gilmour Park) <br />
About 12mm long<br />
The adult is fairly plain, black and brown and without markings but maintains the impressive dietary habits of the larvae and has been introduced into California, New Zealand, Western Australia for biocontrol..  Australia,Cryptolaemus montrouzieri,Geotagged,Summer,ladybird,ladybug,larvae,mimicry Click/tap to enlarge PromotedSpecies introCountry intro

Mealybug destroyer (Cryptolaemus montrouzieri)

A ladybug larva that resembles a nudibranch and is a voracious scale bug eater. Exhibiting aggressive mimicry to resemble it's prey. Exploring the outer branches of an endemic Allocasuarina. One of about a dozen in a local nature reserve. (Gilmour Park)
About 12mm long
The adult is fairly plain, black and brown and without markings but maintains the impressive dietary habits of the larvae and has been introduced into California, New Zealand, Western Australia for biocontrol..

    comments (3)

  1. So this is the larvae stage? That is ridiculously cool! Posted 3 years ago
    1. Yes it's good mimicry. When they are among their prey it's hard to tell the difference.
      I was just thinking about other Coccinellidae larvae and it's easy to see how this could have evolved.
      But humans are so visually biased. I often try to imagine what's going on in other dimensions. I wonder if anyone is looking into the micro audio world.
      Posted 3 years ago
      1. Micro audio. That's a word I haven't heard or even imagined before. Could be very interesting to explore if such a field actually exist.

        By the way, this mimicry reminds me of this bug in Madagascar:
        http://www.jungledragon.com/specie/1893/flower-bug.html

        It's the only animal I've ever seen that camouflages in a group. Collectively they try to resemble a blossom.
        Posted 3 years ago

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''Cryptolaemus montrouzieri'', common name Mealybug Ladybird or Mealybug Destroyer is ladybird species endemic to Queensland and New South Wales, Australia. Unlike many of the often brightly coloured Coccinellidae, it is predominantly brown and has no spots. It has been used as a biological control agent against Mealybugs and other Scale insects. As a larva it apparently looks like the mealybugs they prey on, a case of aggressive mimicry.

Similar species: Beetles
Species identified by Mark Ridgway
View Mark Ridgway's profile

By Mark Ridgway

All rights reserved
Uploaded Mar 2, 2016. Captured Feb 18, 2015 01:41 in 90 Ferndale Rd, Upper Ferntree Gully VIC 3156, Australia.
  • DSC-HX30V
  • f/4.0
  • 1/500s
  • ISO100
  • 8.65mm