Cabbage whitefly

Aleyrodes proletella (synoniem: Aleyrodes brassicae)


This whitefly species has 4 grey spots on its wings; they turn white due to presence of white powdery wax on the wings. The size of the adult is around 1.5 mm. Their head and thorax are dark, they have red eyes. The abdomen is covered by white wax. They have 4 - 5 generations per year, development takes 3 - 6 weeks. Females may produce up to 150 eggs. These oval-elongate eggs are being laid from end of May till October. Young eggs are pale yellow, older ones turn more dark. Eggs hatch within around 12 days. The first instar is the only mobile, immature developmental stage. Instars are 1.5 - 2 mm, white to dark yellow in colour with 2 yellow spots on their abdomen. Larval development takes around 10 days. Pupal stage is yellow-brown. Young adult whiteflies hatch through a T-shaped hole from the pupa. Cabbage whitefly may overwinter outdoors on green plants.

Distribution and crop damage:

Cabbage whitefly occurs in colonies on underside of leaves. They are plant leaf suckers, feeding themselves from phloeem juices. Infested plants turn dirty due to excretion of honeydew. Sooty mold fungus grows on honeydew turning the leaves dirty and dark. This species is known from all over the world.

Cabbage whitefly characteristics:

  • size of adult: 1.5 mm
  • 4 grey spots on the wings
  • white powdery appearance
  • red eyes
  • thorax dark coloured
  • abdomen yellow, coverd with wax
  • female may deposit up to 150 eggs
  • ovale elongate eggs
  • young eggs pale yellow, turn more dark after several days
  • pupae yellow - brown
  • hatching of young adults through T-shaped exit hole
  • overwintering only on green plants 

Host plants cabbage whitefly:

  • many cabbage species, such as Brussels sprouts and kale
  • also on wild plants, several herbs
  • strawberry

Products against cabbage whitefly:

Delphastus catalinae:



Encarsia formosa;


Amblydromalus limonicus:


Amblyseius swirskii: