Green Peach Aphid (Myzus persicae)
green peach aphid
Insecta (Hexapoda) > Hemiptera > Aphididae
Myzus persicae (Sulzer)
Host: burley tobacco
Nicotiana tabacum L.
Photographer: R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company Slide Set, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company
Contact: J. Michael Moore, The University of Georgia
Description: The green peach aphid is a pale green, soft- bodied insect that is found in clusters on the underside of tobacco leaves. The 1/16-inch long "plant lice" use their sucking mouthparts to remove sap from the plants. Feeding by large numbers of aphids results in thin, lightweight leaves that may ripen prematurely. The sugar rich "honeydew" excreted by aphids builds up on the leaf surface and supports growth of black, sooty mold. The honeydew may cause leaves to stick together and cure to a dark, off-color of poor quality. Green peach aphids may transmit viruses such as tobacco vein mottling virus through their mouthparts. Aphid populations build up after winged females fly into tobacco fields, usually during the middle portion of the growing season. They settle on the leaf to feed and give birth to living young. Large populations can build up in a short period of time due to their short life cycle and the occurrence of several generations during a growing season.
R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company Slide Set, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, www.forestryimages.org
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