Aphis craccivora Koch. - Groundnut Aphid


Aphis medicaginis Koch., A. laburni Kalt.

Systematic position.

Class Insecta, order Homoptera, suborder Aphidinea, superfamily Aphidoidea, family Aphididae, subfamily Aphidinae, tribe Aphidini, subtribe Aphidina, genus Aphis.

Biological group.

Polyphagous pests.

Morphology and biology.

Dark-brown ovoid body of apterous female is shining; its length varies from 1.4 to 2.1 mm; abdominal tergites 1-4 have continuous black sclerotized spot. Antenna is two third the body length; terminal process of segment 6 is 2-2.5 times as long as basal part. Marginal papillar tubercles are located on prothorax, on abdominal segments 1 and 7. Short light acicular hairs are visible on body. Long black cylindrical siphunculi are 1.8-2.2 times as long as black fingerlike tail. Body of winged female is narrower than that of apterous female, with longer antenna, but with shorter siphunculi. Winged female has black transverse sclerotized stripes on abdomen. Siphunculi are 1.3-1.8 times as long as tail. Oval eggs are black. The aphid vital cycle includes two host-plants. Overwintering takes place in egg stage on young alfalfa plants (at root zone). There are reports on the aphid wintering on acacia, camel's-thorn, and perennial weed plants. Hatching of fundatrix larvae are observed in February - April (depending on zone). At first, insects feed on alfalfa; the migration to others hosts is marked from the middle of April. In different zones the Groundnut Aphid populates various hosts. For example, in the Middle Asia, the pest feeds on alfalfa first. Its intermediate hosts are white and yellow acacia. At the end of April or in the beginning of May the pest migrates to cotton, where large population of insects is observed mid-June. In Ukraine during May-June, this species lives on acacia. In Byelorussia, lupine is marked as one of the main hosts. Within most of the area, the pest remigrates in July to alfalfa, where it continues its reproduction. Groundnut Aphid lives openly, forming big colonies. Fecundity of one female varies from 25 to 115 larvae. Larval period lasts 8-12 days, including 4 molts. Females live 9-25 days. At early November frosts, the sexual generation appears; in November-December females lay eggs on alfalfa.


Species is spread in Europe, Anterior and Middle Asia, North and South America, and in Africa. Within the territory of the Former Soviet Union, the species occurs widely. The pest is observed in southern regions of the European part of Russia, in Ukraine, Moldova, Middle Asia, Kazakhstan, Transcaucasia, Byelorussia, southern Siberia, Primorskii Territory. High harming activity is marked in Middle Asia, Azerbaijan, Southern Kazakhstan.


Hatching of fundatrix larvae is observed at the air temperature 9.2-11.9°C. The most favorable conditions for insects are the temperature 21-25°C and humidity 60-80%. Females live at the temperature 40-42°C, but many larvae perish at the temperature above 33°C. Maximal number of aphids is marked in May-June. Within the territory of the Former Soviet Union, the species gives 15-20 generations during a year, but only 8 on cotton. Most important predators are Orius niger Wolff., O. minutus L., Chrysopa carnea Steph, Ch. perla L., Ch. phyllochroma W., Coccinella septempunctata L., C. undecimpunctata L., Adalia bipunctata L., Adonia variegate Goeze, Scaeva albomaculata Meg., Syrphus corollae F., S. balteatus Deg., S. ribesii L., Helophilus transfugus L., Sphaerophoria scriptata L., Paragus tibialis Fll., Aphidius cardui Marsh., Praon abjectum Marsh., P. volucre Marsh.

Economic significance.

The pest is a polyphagous species. It damages cultural and weed plants of the families Ranunculaceae, Rosaceae, Fabaceae, Caryophyllaceae, Chenopodiaceae, Malvaceae, Cruciferae, Cucurbitaceae, Solanaceae, Compositae. The aphids injure cotton especially strongly. Insects populate young slender shoots and leaves of cotton. These leaves become yellow and dry up. Damaged plants do not produce flowers and bolls. The species transfers dangerous virus diseases. At high density of aphids the yield may be decreased by 18-50%. Control measures include due forecast of the pest appearance and numbers, eradication of weeds, insecticide treatments in March-April in alfalfa, and in May-June in cotton.

Reference citations:

Alimdzhanov R.A., Zhuravleva I.A. 1963. On harming activity of groundnut aphid Aphis craccivora Koch. In: Arifov U.A., ed. Proceedings of AN Uzb. SSR. N 11. Tashkent: AN Uz. SSR. 50-53 p. (in Russian).
Belikova E.V. 1983. Biological relations of groundnut aphid on cotton field and ways of its regulation. In: Livshits M.F., ed. Integrated cotton protection in Turkmenistan. Ashkhabad: Ylym. 74-81 p. (in Russian).
Bozhko M.P. 1976. Aphids of food plants. Khar'kov: Vishcha shkola. 134 p. (in Russian).
Ivanovskaya O.I. 1976. Fauna of aphids on the territory of West Siberia. In: Zolotorenko G.S., ed. Fauna of helminthes and arthropods of Siberia. Novosibirsk: Nauka. P. 175-189 (in Russian).
Ivanovskaya, O.I., Krupyanskaya, A.N. 1979. The aphids (Homoptera, Aphididae) damaging trees and bushes in Primorskii Territory. In: Ivliev L.A., ed. Ecology and biology of arthropods in the southern Far East. Vladivostok: AN SSSR. 36-53 p. (in Russian).
Karavyanskii N.S., Mazur O.P. 1975. Pests and diseases of fodder cultures. Moscow: Rossel'khozizdat. p. 34-35 (in Russian).
Kesten L.A. 1975. Entomophagous of groundnut aphid. Zashchita rastenii 11: 28 (in Russian).
Kosov V.V., Polyakov I.Ya., ed. 1958. Forecasting and calculation of pests and diseases on agricultural cultures. Moscow: Agricultural Department. 342 p. (in Russian).
Mamedova A.A. 1957. Materials to studying of cotton aphids in Azerbaijan. In: Aliev M.M., ed. Proceedings of AN Azer. SSR. N 6. Baku: AN Azer. SSR. 118-120 p. (in Russian).
Migulin A.A. 1983, ed. Agricultural entomology. Moscow: Kolos. 162-163 p. (in Russian).
Narzikulov M.N., Shomirsaidov Sh. 1975. News about amphigonic generation of groundnut .Aphis craccivora Koch. (Homopt. Aphididae) in Tajikistan. In: Narzikulov M.N., ed. Proceedings of AN Tajik. SSR. Dushanbe: AN Tajik. SSR. 46-51 p. (in Russian).
Nevskii V.P. 1929. Aphids of Middle Asia. Proceedings of Uzbekistan Experimental plant protection station 16. Tashkent. 181-186 p. (in Russian).
Polyakov I.Ya., ed. 1989. Forecasting of pests and diseases on agricultural cultures for 1989. Moscow: VIZR. 145-146 p. (in Russian).
Rekach V.N., Dobretsova T.A. 1933. Aphids of cotton in Transcaucasia. Materials on its biology and control. Tiflis: Tekhnika da Shroma. 107 p. (in Russian).
Rekach V.N. 1938. Aphids on cotton in southern regions of European part of Russia. Pyatigorsk: kraivedizdat. 87 p. (in Russian).
Rekach V.N. 1939. On overwintering of groundnut aphid. Sovetskii khlopok 1: 69-70 (in Russian).
Shaposhnikov G.Kh. 1964. Suborder Aphidinea . aphids. In: Bei-Bienko G.Ya., ed. Keys to insects of the European part of the USSR. V. 1. Moscow & Leningrad: Nauka. 572 p. (in Russian).
Shomirsaidov Sh. 1977. Groundnut aphid as dangerous component of cotton-alfalfa agrobiocenosis and integrated control against it in South Tajikistan. PhD Thesis. Baku: Zoological institute of AN Azerb. SSR, 26 p. (in Russian).
Shomirsaidov Sh..1983. Groundnut aphid as dangerous component of cotton-alfalfa agrobiocenosis and integrated control against it in Tajikistan. Dushanbe: Donish. 104 p. (in Russian).
Uspenskii F.M. 1951. Significance of white acacia and others Fabaceae at cotton infestation by groundnut aphid. In: Mirpulatov K.I., ed. Pests and diseases of cotton and others cultures and control measures (Proc. of Uz. STAZR). Tashkent: Soyuz NIKhI. 39-43 p. (in Russian).
Uspenskii F.M., Solov'eva A.I. 1956. Pests and diseases of cotton. Cottongrowing. Tashkent: gosizdat Uz.SSR. p. 270 (in Russian).
Vasil.ev V.P., ed. 1973. Pests of agricultural crops and forest plantations. 1. Kiev: Urozhai. .285-287 p. (in Russian).

© Berim M.N..

Picture of Aphis craccivora Koch. is borrowed from the "Pests and diseases of food cultures" (Karavyanskii N.S., Mazur O.P., 1975).

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