Biology, images, analysis, design...
|"It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important" |
Bristly mugwort aphidOn this page: Identification & Distribution Biology & Ecology Other aphids on the same host
Identification & Distribution
Adult apterae of Pleotrichophorus glandulosus are yellowish white or greenish, sometimes with a pale green median stripe (see first picture below) (cf. Pleotrichophorus duponti which is dull greyish green with green transverse stripes). The antennal tubercles are fairly low with divergent inner faces. The antennae and legs are mainly pale with only the apex of the fifth antennal segment, the base of the sixth antennal segment, and the tarsi dark. The antennae have a very long terminal process. They have numerous thick, short capitate hairs hairs on the dorsum in 2-3 transverse rows on each segment. The siphunculi are long and slender, cylindrical over most of the length but slightly expanded at the tip with a small flange. The cauda is finger shaped. The body length of the adult Pleotrichophorus glandulosus aptera is 1.4-2.6 mm.
The bristly mugwort aphid lives on the undersides of the lower leaves of mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris). It can also be found on other Artemisia species and corn chamomile (Anthemis arvensis). Sexuales are produced in autumn with eggs laid on the leaf undersides. Pleotrichophorus glandulosus is found over most of Europe including Britain, and has been introduced to North America.
Biology & Ecology
We have only found Pleotrichophorus glandulosus on one occasion - on a large clump of mugwort growing in the car park of Malling Down Nature Reserve in East Sussex. They were not especially common, being present usually singly on only a small percentage of the lower leaves. The group of immatures pictured below was the largest group we found on one leaf.
They were sharing the habitat with large numbers of pointed snails (Cochlicella acuta, see picture below), a species which prefers calcareous soils as present at Malling Down on the South Downs of England.
Other aphids on same host:
Blackman & Eastop list 73 species of aphid (including 28 Macrosiphoniella species) as feeding on mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) worldwide, and provide formal identification keys.
Of those aphid species, Baker (2015) lists 25 as occurring in Britain: Aphis aurantii, Aphis fabae, Aphis gossypii, Aphis spiraecola, Aulacorthum solani, Brachycaudus cardui, Brachycaudus helichrysi, Coloradoa artemisiae, Coloradoa heinzei, Coloradoa rufomaculata, Cryptosiphum artemisiae, Macrosiphoniella abrotani, Macrosiphoniella absinthii, Macrosiphoniella artemisiae, Macrosiphoniella oblonga, Macrosiphoniella pulvera, Macrosiphoniella sanborni, Macrosiphoniella tanacetaria, Myzus ascalonicus, Myzus ornatus, Myzus persicae, Pleotrichophorus glandulosus, Protrama flavescens, Smynthurodes betae and Trama troglodytes.