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Euceraphis punctipennis

Downy birch aphid

Identification & Distribution  Other aphids on the same host 

Identification & Distribution:

Adult winged forms of Euceraphis punctipennis have a pale green abdomen and are covered with bluish-white wax. Their head and thorax are dark brown. Dorsal black patches when present are usually confined to abdominal tergites 4 and 5. Dark cross bands are never present in spring (distinguishes specimens from Euceraphis betulae at least in spring!). The body length of Euceraphis punctipennis alates is 3.0-4.8 mm.

The images below show Euceraphis punctipennis alates in alcohol, dorsal, and newly-moulted, lateral.

 

The downy birch aphid lives on the undersides of leaves of downy birch (Betula pubescens). Sexual forms occur in October and November. Euceraphis punctipennis occurs throughout Europe.

 

Other aphids on same host:

Blackman & Eastop list 15 species of aphid  as feeding on downy birch (Betula pubescens) worldwide, and provide formal identification keys. Of those aphid species, Baker (2015)  lists 14 as occurring in Britain: Betulaphis quadrituberculata,  Calaphis betulicola,  Calaphis flava,  Callipterinella calliptera,  Callipterinella minutissima, Callipterinella tuberculata,  Clethrobius comes,  Euceraphis punctipennis, Glyphina betulae,  Glyphina pseudoschrankiana,  Hamamelistes betulinus,  Monaphis antennata,  Stomaphis quercus  and Symydobius oblongus. 

Acknowledgements

We have made provisional identifications from high resolution photos of living specimens, along with host plant identity. In the great majority of cases, identifications have been confirmed by microscopic examination of preserved specimens. We have used the keys and species accounts of Blackman & Eastop (1994)  and Blackman & Eastop (2006)  supplemented with Blackman (1974) , Stroyan (1977) , Stroyan (1984) , Blackman & Eastop (1984) , Heie (1980-1995) , Dixon & Thieme (2007)  and Blackman (2010) . We fully acknowledge these authors as the source for the (summarized) taxonomic information we have presented. Any errors in identification or information are ours alone, and we would be very grateful for any corrections. For assistance on the terms used for aphid morphology we suggest the figure  provided by Blackman & Eastop (2006).

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