Grains Research and Development

Date: 04.02.2015

Crop Aphids Back Pocket Guide

Aphids back pocket guide cover image

Aphids are a group of soft-bodied bugs commonly found in a wide range of crops and pastures. Adults and nymphs suck out the plant sap and in early infestations this can remove nutrients from the young plants causing stunting and other symptoms. 

In heavy infestations secretion of honeydew can also cause secondary fungal growth that inhibits photosynthesis and decreases plant growth. Many aphid species also transmit viruses through their sap-sucking mouthparts, leading to the largest impacts on crop yields.

In Australia, most aphids only produce females. This means insecticide resistance can quickly establish in aphid populations as genes are passed clonally through successive generations. 

Identification of crop aphids is very important when making control decisions. Distinguishing between aphids can be easy in the apterous (non-winged) form but challenging with alate (winged) aphids. 

This Back Pocket Guide is designed to assist growers and agronomists in identifying the most commonly observed aphids throughout Australia’s cropping regions.

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February 2014 – update July 2016

Published by:
Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC)