Any of several scale insects of the family Dactylopiidae, especially Dactylopius coccus, that feed on prickly pear cacti and range from the southwest United States to Central America.
Any of a family (Dactylopiidae) of scale insects, esp. one (Dactylopius coccus) that has a brilliant-red bodily fluid, feeds on certain cactuses, is found chiefly in Mexico, and was formerly much used as a source of cochineal.
Cochineal-insect Sentence Examples
The cochineal insect is found on the cactus which grows in abundance in the vicinity, and the town is known throughout Ecuador for its manufacture of boots and shoes, and for a cordage made from cabuya, the fibre of the agave plant.
The cochineal insect is nurtured on a species of Opuntia (0.
The, cochineal insect was once an important commercial product, but the industry has fallen into decay.
The male of the cochineal insect is half the size of the female, and, unlike it, is devoid of nutritive apparatus; it has long white wings, and a body of a deep red colour, terminated by two diverging setae.
Silkworms have been bred with success in some departments, and the cochineal insect is found wherever the conditions are favourable for the cactus.