Rhopalosiphum maidis (Fitch)

Rhopalosiphum maidis (Fitch)

   
Common name: Maize Aphid; Corn Leaf Aphid
Synonyms: Aphis maidis Fitch
Ethiopian name: Yebekolo Kish Kish
   
Order: Homoptera
Family: Aphididae
   
HOSTS:  
Main hosts: Young leaves of Maize, Sorghum, Barley, Wheat, and other Gramineae
Alternative hosts: Tobacco, Cyperaceae and some other plants
   
IMPORTANCE IN ETHIOPIA:  
Minor pest of: Barley, Maize, Sorghum, Tef, Wheat
   
DAMAGE:  
  Leaves, leaf sheaths and inflorescenses are infested with colonies of aphids. The leaves may become mottled and distorted. Inflorescenses can become sterile. New growth may remain dwarfed. Heavy attacks cause the plant to wilt and die. These aphids are known to be a vector of virus diseases.
   
INSECT BIOLOGY & RECOGNITION:  
Apterae: The apterae are rather elongate aphids. The antennae are short. The colour is yellow green to dark olive green or bluish green. Sometimes they are dusted with wax. Around the base of the siphunculi there are dark purplish areas. The siphunculi are dark and short. The length is 0.9-2.4 mm.

Aphid colony attended by ants on maize.
Aphid colony attended by ants on maize.

Alatae: The alatae have a yellow green to dark green abdomen without the dark dorsal markings near the siphunculi. They are 0.9-2.4 mm long.
   
REMARK:  
  Several other species of aphids have been recorded on cereals in Ethiopia.
   
 

Winged adult of Rhopalosiphum maidis
Winged adult of Rhopalosiphum maidis

Larva of Rhopalosiphum maidis
Larva of Rhopalosiphum maidis

Text adapted from:

INSECT PESTS OF CEREALS IN ETHIOPIA identification and control methods by Hein Bijlmakers, FAO/UNDP Project ETH/86/029 Crop Protection Phase II, Addis Ababa, October 1989