Tree Fruit Insect Pest - Apple Grain Aphid

Apple grain aphid, Rhopalosiphum fitchii, rarely causes damage to apples, but it is the first aphid to appear on apples in spring and may appear in large, but innocuous, numbers.
Tree Fruit Insect Pest - Apple Grain Aphid - Articles


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Description and life cycle

This aphid overwinters as an egg on apple and related trees and moves to grass and grain hosts for the spring and summer. Overwintering eggs are shiny black and hard to distinguish from the eggs of green aphids and rosy apple aphids, but usually hatch around silver tip or about 7 to 10 days earlier than the others. Nymphs are dark green with a light-colored stripe running down the back. This stripe darkens as the aphid gets older.

How distinguished from other aphid species

Apple grain aphids are distinguished from other species by antennae much less than half the body length and very short cornicles. In the fall, aphids return to apple trees, produce sexual forms, mate, and lay eggs.

Monitoring and management

Monitoring and management of this species in most orchards is unnecessary since it rarely causes a problem.