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Rhopalosiphoninus ribesinus

Currant stem aphid

Identification & Distribution 

Identification & Distribution:

Rhopalosiphoninus ribesinus is a medium-sized dull reddish brown to brownish black aphid with the dorsum sclerotized and with a rugose texture. The head is spiculose and the antennae are long and thin. The antennal tubercles are well developed with their inner faces steep-sided or apically convergent. The siphunculi are dark and strongly swollen between the constricted basal and strongly flanged apical parts. The siphunculi are 2.5-3 times the length of the short triangular cauda. The body length of Rhopalosiphoninus ribesinus apterae is 2.0-2.5 mm.

The clarified slide mounts below are of adult viviparous female Rhopalosiphoninus ribesinus : wingless, and winged.

Micrographs of clarified mounts  by permission of Roger Blackman, copyright AWP  all rights reserved.

The currant stem aphid does not host alternate but feeds only on Currants (Ribes spp.). It feeds on the old wood of lower shoots, apparently because it prefers a humid atmosphere. Rhopalosiphoninus ribesinus is not thought to be of economic importance.


Our particular thanks to Roger Blackman for images of his clarified slide mounts.

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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