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Genus Liosomaphis

Barberry aphids

On this page: Genus Liosomaphis  Liosomaphis berberidis 

Genus Liosomaphis [Macrosiphini]

Medium-sized aphids, the adult viviparae of which may be winged or wingless. The head is smooth, with the antennal tubercles weakly developed. The dorsum is unpigmented in viviparous females but with some pigmentation in winged forms. The siphunculi are markedly clavate and swollen, with the maximum width of the swollen part broader than the base. Cauda tongue-shaped and longer than its basal width.

There are 5 species in this genus all living on Barberry or Oregon grape (Berberidaceae). They retain a sexual stage in the life cycle but there is no host alternation. They are not attended by ants. One species is a pest of ornamental Berberis bushes.


Liosomaphis berberidis (Barberry aphid)

The apterae are yellow, yellowish green or orange reddish and slightly wax covered. The antennae and legs are mostly pale. The dorsum has no dark sclerites and is more or less distinctly wrinkled. The antennae are shorter than the body, about 0.4-0.5 times its length. The siphunculi are strongly swollen on the apical two thirds with a rather small flange. The cauda is thick and blunt. The body length of apterae is 2.0-2.5 mm.

The barberry aphid does not host alternate and lives on the underside of leaves of barberry and Oregon grape (Berberis and Mahonia). It has a sexual stage in its life cycle. It is not attended by ants.

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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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