Hyalopteus pruni Geoffr. - Mealy Plum Aphid

Systematic position.

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

Biological group.

Oligophagous pest of stone fruit trees.

Morphology and biology.

The oblong body of apterous female is green, with pollination; its length varies from 2.4 to 2.8 mm. The insect has two rows of white spots on thorax and abdomen. Antenna is light, 6-segmented, a little shorter than the body. Frontal line is flat, without tubercles and flutes. Light cylindrical siphunculi widening toward apex (2-2.5 times shorter than fingerlike light tail) have no covers. The head and thorax of winged female are dark. Green abdomen has two rows of white spots. The body is pollinated; its length varies from 1.9 to 2.2 mm. Oval eggs are black. The overwintering takes place at the phase of egg. Eggs are located at the basis of buds or on their surface on young shoots of plum trees, apricot trees, peach trees, cherry-plum. In the zone of strong damage, the hatching of fundatrix larvae is observed in March through the beginning of April at fruit bud blossoming. The aphids prefer to feed on lower side of leaves. They can feed on flowers and fruits. The insects suck the sap from ribs of leaves. The species is facultative migrant; its secondary hosts are plants of the genera Phragmites, Calamagrostis, Elymus, Typha, Carex. Main migration to secondary hosts is marked in May. The maximal pest numbers on these plants meet in June. The aphid number considerably decreases in July due to hot temperatures, increasing again at the beginning of August. The insects feed along the main leaf ribs on these plants. Non-migrating part of population gives maximal number in May-June. The larval period lasts 7-10 day; life span of parthenogenetic female is about 20-44 days (depending on generation). Its fecundity reaches 70 larvae. Aphids form big colonies both on primary and secondary hosts. The migration to primary host takes place in August. Viginoparae appear in September-October, giving the beginning of sexual generation. In October the female lays 5-7 eggs on stone fruit trees near bud basis. Oviposition continues until leaf fall and strong frosts.


Species is spread in Europe; Anterior and Middle Asia; North America, North Africa, Australia. Within the territory of the Former USSR, the species occurs widely in the zone of hosts growing. Its highest harmful activity is reported in steppe zones of Ukraine, Lower Volga Basin region, Moldova, Middle Asia, Kazakhstan (mainly in southern regions), North Caucasus, Transcaucasia.


The hatching of fundatrix larvae is observed at the degree day sum 72.5-90.7°C at lower developmental threshold 5°C. The most favorable conditions for apterous female are temperature 21-25°C and relative humidity 70-80%. The pest prefers shaded branches with many leaves. It gives 10-12 generations during a year. Most important predators are: Synharmonia conglobata L., Scymnus subvillosus Qz., Adalia bipunctata L., Propylaea 14-punctata L., Coccinella septempunctata L., C. quinquepunctata L., Adonia variegata Goeze., Chrysopa. perla L., Ch. carnea Steph., Ch. albolineata Kill., Cr. matynovae Lup., Syrphus corollae F., S. balteatus Deg., S. ribesii L., S. interrumpes Walk., Paragus aegiptius Wd., Ephedrus persicae Frogg., E. plagiator N, E. cerasicola Stary, Praon volucre Hal., Praon volucre Hal., Leucopis atrifarsis Tanas., L. glyphinivora Tanas.

Economic significance.

The species is oligophagous. It damages stone fruit trees: plum, apricot, cherry-plum, almond, and peach. Among wild plants, the insect prefers species of the genera Phragmites, Calamagrostis, Elymus, Typha, Carex. Damaged leaves become yellow along ribs; their border bends, forming a boat. Flowers wither, fruits fall down. Fruit yield may essentially decrease. Control measures include due forecasting pest appearance and numbers, eradication of weeds, insecticide treatments in April-June.

Reference citations:

Andreev A.V. 1982. Aphids of plum gardens in Moldova. PHD Thesis. Kishinev: Institute of Zoology and Physiology. 22 p. (in Russian).
Bosenko L.I. & Mashek A.A. 1967. To biology of mealy plum aphid in the Leningrad Region. In: Fraer S.V., ed. Proceedings of Leningrad agricultural institute. Leningrad-Pushkin: LSKhI. 114-117 p. (in Russian).
Chizhnyak Yu.V. 1965. Mealy plum aphid (Hyalopterus arundinis F.) and control measures against it in educational farm of KhSKhI. In: Grinchenko A.M., ed. Proceedings of Khar'kov agricultural institute. Vol. 6. Khar'kov: KhSKhI. 33-34 p. (in Russian).
Fol'kina M.Ya. 1973. To harming activity of mealy plum aphid (Hyalopterus pruni Geoffr.) in Alma-Ata zone of fruit-growing. In: Almaniyazov A.A., ed. Agronomy in Kazakhstan. (Proc. of Kuban' SKhI). Alma-Ata: Kazakh. SKhI. 120-124 p (in Russian).
Fol'kina M.Ya. 1980. Mealy plum aphid. Zashchita rastenii 3: 40-41 (in Russian).
Fursova M.F. 1970. Life cycle of mealy plum aphid (Hyalopterus pruni) in Turkmen SSR. Zoologicheskii zhurnal 49 (10): 1577-1579 (in Russian).
Gusynina L.M. 1958. About specialization of mealy plum aphid on stone fruit trees. Zashchita rastenii 4: 52 (in Russian).
Ivanovskaya O.I. 1976. Fauna of aphids in 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. & Kupyanskaya 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: Izd. AN SSSR. 36-51 p. (in Russian).
Kharchenko N.N. 1967. To biology of mealy plum aphid in Byelorussia. In: Egorov Yu.G., ed. Proceedings of XIII scientific conference. Minsk. Grodno SKhI. 178 p. (in Russian).
Kosov V.V., Polyakov I.Ya., ed. 1958. Forecasting and calculation of pests and diseases on agricultural cultures. Moscow: Agricultural Department. 455 p. (in Russian).
Kursakova L.E.& Vanin I.I. 1969. Damaging of plum by mealy plum aphid. In: Nesterov Ya.S., ed. Proceedings of Michurinsk Central Genetic laboratory. Vol. 16. Michurinsk: VASKhNIL. 56-59 p. (in Russian).
Mangutova S.A. 1982. Species composition and entomophage number dynamics on mealy plum aphid (Hyalopterus pruni Geoffr.) in Kara-Kalpakia. In: Kamalov S.K., ed. Proceedings of Kara-Kalpakia department of AN Uzbek. SSR. N 1. Nukus: Kara-Kalpakia department of AN Uzbek. SSR. 19-22 p. (in Russian).
Nevskii V.P. 1929. Aphids of Middle Asia. Proceedings of Uzbekistan Experimental plant protection station 16. Tashkent. 214-215 p. (in Russian).
Shaposhnikov G.Kh. 1964. Order Homoptera. In: Kryzhanovskii O.L., ed. Insects and mites - pests of agricultural crops. V. 1. Leningrad: Nauka. P. 569 (in Russian).
Sifroshvili N. 1971. The importance of entomophages on stone fruit trees and their using. In: Proceedings of Georgian Institute of gardening, viniculture, and wine-making. Tbilisi: Metsniereba. N 19-20. 55-60 p. (in Russian).
Toreniyazov E.Sh., Khozhanov U.Kh. 2002. Mealy plum aphid. Zashchita rastenii 8: 36 (in Russian).
Tsyngalev N.M. 1981. Mealy plum aphid. Sel'skoe khozyaistvo Belorussii 4: 42 (in Russian).
Vanin I.I.& Garnago M. N. 1971. Mealy plum aphid on sandy cherry trees. In: Nesterov Ya.S., ed. Proceedings of Michurinsk Central Genetic laboratory. Vol. 17. Michurinsk: VASKhNIL. 71-72 p. (in Russian).
Vasil.ev V.P., ed. 1973. Pests of agricultural crops and forest plantations. 1. Kiev: Urozhai. 277-278 p. (in Russian).
Vereshchagin B.V.& Andreev A.V. 1981. Aphids (Homoptera, Aphidoidea) damaging plum in Moldova. In: Lupashku M.F., ed. Proceedings of AN Moldavian SSR. N 5. Kishinev: Shtiintsa. 36-41 p. (in Russian).

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