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Genus Clypeoaphis

Amaranth aphids

On this page: Clypeoaphis Clypeoaphis suaedae

Clypeoaphis [Macrosiphini]

Clypeoaphis are small pale aphids. They have no antennal tubercles, and the front of the head is convex. The clypeus is dark and bulbous. The antennae are usually six segmented and much shorter than the body. The siphunculi are short, with a weak flange. The cauda is thumb shaped and longer than the siphunculi.

There are one or possibly two Clypeoaphis species. They feed on members of the amaranth family (Amaranthanceae). These aphids do not host alternate and are not attended by ants.

 

Clypeoaphis_suedeae (Sea-blite aphid)

Adult Clypeoaphis suaedae apterae are pale olive-green and covered in mealy wax (see first picture below). The terminal process of the sixth antennal segment is slightly shorter than the base of that segment. The antennae of Clypeoaphis suaedae apterae have no secondary rhinaria whilst those of alates have 4-7 on the third antennal segment. The siphunculi are short, tubular or barrel shaped, much longer than their basal width and with a weak flange (see micrograph below). The cauda is thumb-shaped and longer than the siphunculi; its length is more than twice its basal width and it bears 4-9 hairs. Adult apterae of Clypeoaphis suaedae are very small at only 1.2-1.6 mm long.

Clypeoaphis suaedae alates are reputedly rare, and we have yet to find any. Oviparae (see second picture above) have very slightly to moderately swollen hind tibiae. The males are apterous and small.

Clypeoaphis suaedae feeds on Chenopodioideae, especially annual sea-blight Suaeda maritima and Suaeda fruticosa. Oviparae and small apterous males are produced in autumn. The sea-blight aphid is found in Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, Central Asia and Korea.

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Acknowledgements

Whilst we make every effort to ensure that identifications are correct, we cannot absolutely warranty their accuracy. We have mostly made 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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