lac insect

John Huntington huntington.2 at OSU.EDU
Thu Apr 21 15:41:45 UTC 2005

My apologies!  I was interrupted while I was and completely for got
to all my comment.

It seems that there are several species, of Lacciferidae, and the
current usage for the Indian source of shellac is Laccifer lacca.
All the best


lac insect

Small plant-sucking insect related to scale insects and mealy bugs.
The females of most species lack legs and have reduced antennae;
their bodies are globular and enclosed within a dense resinous
secretion called lac. Lac insects are found mainly in the tropics and

  Lac insects are members of the family Lacciferidae, order Hemiptera
(suborder Homoptera), class Insecta, phylum Arthropoda.

A number of species have two generations annually, in which two types
of males occur: the first generation includes both winged and
wingless males; the second generation is wingless.

Many species used to be of considerable commercial value, as they
yield a dye. However, with the advent of synthetic dyes the demand
for lac insects has decreased.

The Indian lac insect, Laccifer lacca, produces stick lac, a
secretion from which shellac (used in varnishes and polishes) is


>Dear Colleagues,
>I have seen the Indian lac insect (that produces the lac resin)
>identified by various zoological names:  Laccifer lacca (= Tachardia
>lacca), Kerria lac Kerr, Coccus lacca, Carteria lacca.  Does anyone
>know which of these is the most recently accepted name among
>zoologists/entomologists?  Or can you point me to an authoritative
>John Brockington
>Professor J. L. Brockington
>Secretary General, International Association of Sanskrit Studies
>Sanskrit, School of Asian Studies
>7-8 Buccleuch Place
>Edinburgh  EH8 9LW      U.K.
>tel: +131 650 4174

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