These wax scales were on a Gaura lindheimeri stem. (Gaura doesn't have mcuh in the way of well recognized common names but one variety name, whirling butterflies, is well known and might clue you in.) The scales were only present on one Gaura in a group of seven -- on the one plant that had been overtaken by the shade and roots from a nearby clump of bamboo.

One of the great things about insect names is that so many of them are entirely descriptive: These scales actually look like blobs of wax. (Or, as Janet says and dates herself doing it, like little Kilroys.)

Notice the crawlers -- immature scales. Also pretty interesting to look at, but still mobile and they have not yet built up a waxy armor.

(To purchase this copyright protected photo go to our order form.)