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Aphidinae : Aphidini: Braggia urovaneta
 

 

Braggia urovaneta

Crispleaf buckwheat aphid

On this page: Identification & Distribution Other aphids on the same host

Identification & Distribution

Adult apterae of Braggia urovaneta (see first picture below) have the head, thorax and abdomen black. The body is partially covered with powder-like grey wax in a more or less regular pattern leaving the mid-dorsum from tergites II to VI largely wax free. The siphunculi and cauda are black. Antennal segments I and II are black, segments III, IV, and the base of V are pale to dusky, and the apical portion of V and all of VI are dusky to light black. The antennae are without secondary rhinaria (cf. Braggia agathona, which usually has rhinaria on segments III & IV). The rostrum reaches to the metathoracic coxae. The prothorax has marginal tubercles. The femora and tarsi are dark, but the tibiae are pale with dusky apices. The abdominal dorsum is reticulated, and dorsal hairs are thin, without tuberculate bases (cf. Braggia uncompahgrensis, which has dorsal hairs very thick, arising from tuberculate bases). The siphunculi are quite long, but the rim is very poorly developed. The cauda is almost as wide at base as long, has a pointed tip, and bears 3-4 inwardly curving hairs. The body length of adult Braggia urovaneta apterae is 0.9-1.9 mm.

Images above copyright Jesse Rorabaugh under a public domain (CCO) licence.

The alate vivipara of Braggia urovaneta (see second picture below) has the head, thorax and abdomen black, and the antennae almost uniform dusky. The femora are dusky, the tibiae dusky at base and apically with the region between light yellowish, and the tarsi dusky. The siphunculi and cauda are dusky to black. The images below are clarified slide mounts of an apterous and an alate vivipara of Braggia urovaneta.

Images above copyright Jesse Rorabaugh under a public domain (CCO) licence.

Hille Ris Lambers (1966) recognised two subspecies of Braggia urovaneta:

  • Braggia urovaneta s.str has the last rostral segment about 0.145-0.175 mm long, about 1.29-1.50 times as long as second joint of hind tarsi, 2.33-2.67 times basal width of siphunculi. Pike (2009) gives Colorado, Utah, and Idaho for this subspecies to which we can now add Nevada; the specimens pictured here (see clarified mounts above) feeding on Eriogonum racemosum had a long apical rostral segment (0.165 mm).

  • Braggia urovaneta ssp. pachysiphon has the last rostral segment shorter, 0.11-0.135 mm long, 0.93-1.20 times the second hind tarsal segment; 1.20-2.00 times the basal width of the thicker siphunculi. It is found on Eriogonum latifolium in California.

Image above copyright Jesse Rorabaugh under a public domain (CCO) licence.

Braggia urovaneta is monoecious holocyclic on three species of wild buckwheat (Eriogonum corymbosum, Eriogonum latifolium, Eriogonum racemosum). Oviparae and alate males have been collected in Colorado on Eriogonum corymbosum in early October. Hottes (1950) noted that the species was, as a rule, very abundant, often encrusting the lower stems and upper portions of its host. Braggia urovaneta is restricted to the southwestern states of the USA. Colonies are usually attended by ants (see picture above).

 

Other aphids on the same host

Braggia urovaneta has been found on 3 species of wild buckwheat (Eriogonum corymbosum, Eriogonum latifolium, Eriogonum racemosum).

Acknowledgements

We are grateful to Jesse Rorabaugh for making his pictures available for use under public domain licence.

We have used the keys and species accounts of Hottes (1950), Hille Ris Lambers (1966) & Pike (2009), along with information from Roger Blackman & Victor Eastop in Aphids on Worlds Plants. We fully acknowledge these authors and those listed in the reference sections 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

  • Hille Ris Lambers, D. (1966). Notes on California aphids, with descriptions of new genera and new species. Hilgardia 97(15), 569-623. Abstract

  • Hottes, F.C. (1950). Descriptions of Western Colorado Aphididae. Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 63, 15-30 (p.24). Full text

  • Pike, K.S. et al. (2009). New species of Braggia (Hemiptera: Aphididae) on buckwheat in western North America. The Canadian Entomologist 141(6), 561-581. Full text