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The lace bug Cochlochila bullita (Stål) (Heteroptera: Tingidae), a potential pest of Orthosiphon stamineus Bentham (Lamiales: Lamiaceae) in Malaysia

Orthosiphon stamineus Bentham, a medicinal plant in the family Lamiaceae, is used to make a well known herbal tea in many countries including Malaysia. Since its establishment as an important cash crop, the herb has been relatively free from any serious insect problems until recently. In Selangor, Malaysia we observed the herb heavily infested by the lace bug Cochlochila bullita Stål (Heteroptera: Tingidae). This is the first record of its occurrence in Malaysia and also the first record on the host plant, O. stamineus. The lace bug damages the host plant by piercing and sucking young leaves and shoots, resulting in the curling and drying of the leaves and shoots. The infestation pattern and survival of C. bullita on O. stamineus indicates this lace bug has the potential to be a serious pest of this medicinal plant.

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