Biosecurity threat, not present in Australia

Jacobiasca formosana

Cotton leafhopper


Many of the insects depicted on these pages are outwardly similar and you should not use photographs as the sole means of identification. These pages form part of a scientific key which will assist a trained entomologist to identify the species accurately.

Jacobiasca formosana (Paoli, 1932)


Common Name: Cotton leafhopper, Small green leafhopper, Tea green leafhopper.


Subfamily/Tribe: Typhlocybinae/ Empoascini


Distribution. (The species is recorded in the literature from the following countries but some records may be based on misidentifications) China, India, Malaysia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Philippines, Taiwan and Thailand.


Economic Status: Jacobiasca formosana is a pest of cotton, groundnuts and tea. However, in some parts of Asia, its feeding changes the chemical content of tea leaves to produce a tea of a distinctive flavour.


Notes: The taxonomy of the complex including Empoasca vitis (Goethe), Empoasca onukii Matsuda and Jacobiasca formosana (Paoli) has been confused (e.g., Fu et al. 2014; Qin et al. 2015). Consequently, the distribution of these species cannot be assured, despite records of “Jacobiasca formosana” from the countries listed above, including overlooked records (e.g., Philippines by Bigornia, 1963). There are no species of Jacobiasca recognised in Australia. The identification of Typhlocybinae are notoriously difficult and should be confirmed with dissection of male genitalia or analysis of molecular sequences.

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