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Aphid predator (Hemiptera : Miridae)

Dicyphus ? pallicornis

On this page: Identification & Distribution  Biology & Ecology 

Identification & Distribution

Adults of Dicyphus pallicornis may be brachypterous or macropterous. The head is pale with dark markings. The second antennal segment is entirely pale or dark at the base only. The tibial spines are very short, less than the width of the tibia. We think the pictured specimens are most likely this species - they are brachypterous, the second antennal segment is mainly pale, and tibial spines are very short. But the dark markings on the head are more extensive than they should be, and the mirid was not on its usual host of foxglove.

Dicyphus pallicornis is mainly found on foxglove. The pictured mirid was found on bramble (Rubus fruticosus).

 

Biology & Ecology

Dicyphus pallicornis is relatively unusual in that it overwinters in all stages (eggs through to adults) (Wheeler (2001) ). Most species of mirid overwinter in the egg stage. It is assumed to be at least partly predatory.

Acknowledgements

For the mirid bugs we have used Southwood & Leston (1959)  and British Bugs  to aid in identification and for the key characteristics.

For aphids 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).

Useful weblinks 

References

  •  Wheeler, A.G.W. (2001). Biology of the Plant Bugs (Hemiptera: Miridae). Cornell University Press.