Aphidoidea (taxonomic superfamily)
Leaves of plants across a variety of habitats
No aphid species are known to be endangered
This species is
to the Truckee Meadows.
Aphids are soft-bodied insects in the superfamily Aphidoidea. There are over 5,000 species of aphids that range in color from black and white to red and green. Some species of aphid are smooth, while others are woolly. Depending on what cycle of life they're in, aphids may or may not have wings.
Aphids are sometimes referred to as “ant cows” since ants will herd and protect aphids from predators like ladybugs in exchange for their honeydew excretion which they “milk” from the aphids.
Aphids vary their reproduction based on the season and condition of their host plants. Normally, stem mothers (females without wings) reproduce via parthenogenesis (without sexual reproduction), only creating females until late summer when both males and females are produced. When the host plant becomes overcrowded, some winged adults are produced which fly off to new plants.
Aphids suck both liquid and nutrients from plant leaves. Therefore, they can cause the spread of diseases, produce galls, and cause various others problems for plants.
Encyclopædia Britannica, Aphid, 2021, https://www.britannica.com/animal/aphid
University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and the Environment, Aphids, 2021, https://entomology.ca.uky.edu/ef103
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Illinois Natural History Survey, 2021, https://www.inhs.illinois.edu/programs/aphids
University of Michigan BioKids, Aphididae, 2021, http://www.biokids.umich.edu/critters/Aphididae/
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