Aphis gossypii

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cotton aphid (Aphis gossypii) infestation on cotton
Source: Mississippi State University Archive - IPM Images

Aphis gossypii Glover, 1877 (cotton aphid)

The aphid has a world-wide distribution, and is especially a pest in the tropics and subtropics. It causes serious damage to cotton and many other crops, including vegetables, fruits or ornamentals. While the species is highly polyphagous, with several hundred host plants recorded, a given population is usually specialized on a few plants.

With the increased plantings of cotton varieties resistant to the cotton bollworm and resulting fewer pesticide applications, the aphid has again become important on that crop. Apart from feeding damage, the aphid is also an important vector of many virus diseases like Cucumber mosaic virus, Citrus tristeza virus or Potato virus Y.

Vernacular names
• Deutsch: Baumwollblattlaus
• English: cotton aphid
cotton-melon aphid
melon aphid
• Español: pulgón del algodónero
áfido del algodón
amarillo del algodonero
pulgón del melón
• Français: puceron du cotonnier
puceron du melon
• Português: pulgão-do-algodoeiro
pulgão-das-inflorescências

The aphid overwinters in the egg stage. In spring and summer, females often reproduce parthenogenetically and give birth to live first instar nymphs. These then pass through 4 additional immature stages before moulting to adults. Under suitable condition one generation can be completed in less than 2 weeks and populations can increase correspondingly fast.

Apterous females are about 2 mm long with varying colours, usually green to brownish yellow but often darker. The legs and antennae are usually yellowish, but the tips of the antennal segments, femora, tibiae and tarsi are dark. Winged females have a black head and thorax, but a lighter abdomen.

Synonyms
Aphis cucumeris
Aphis cucurbiti
Cerosipha gossypii

For details see the respective page in Wikipedia.