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Aphids/Plant Lice Biology - Essay Example

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Aphids/ Plant lice Aphids, also known as plant lice, are small sap sucking insects that include in the superfamily Aphidoidea. In Britain and the Commonwealth, aphids are commonly known as greenflies, blackflies, or whiteflies…
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Aphids/Plant Lice Biology Essay
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Download file to see previous pages Among the known 4,400 species of 10 families, some species of aphids have asexual reproduction capability. Among the identified species, around 250 are most destructive pest causing threats to agriculture, forestry, and gardening. Aphids generally vary in length from 1 to 10 millimeters. Predatory ladybirds, hoverfly larvae, crab spiders, aphid midge larvae, lacewings, and entomophthorales are some of the natural enemies of aphids. This paper will deeply analyze about aphids by giving reference to their living habits, food pattern, and special effects in the nature and plants. The basic classification about aphids indicates that they include to the Kingdom-Animalia, Phylum-Arthropoda, Class- Insecta, Order-Hemiptera, and Family-Aphididae. Last year, my colleagues and I had a trip to a reserve park in the Sepulveda basin wildlife reserve. The trip was greatly helpful for us to understand more about aphids, their life circulation, and their impacts on nature. Non-native invasive weeds and trees are not allowed in that area (Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve). While examining aphid symbioses, ant mutualism and bacterial endosymbiosis are two important phenomena to be considered. It is observed that some farming ant species collect and protect aphid eggs in their nests over the whole winter and bring back the newly hatched aphids back to the plant (Aphid). In turn, the farming ants feed the honeydew released by the aphids due to the terminations of their alimentary canals. A similar relation is seen between daring ants and aphids. In addition, endosymbiosis with micro-organism is common insects; with almost 10% insects including many aphid species largely depend upon intracellular bacteria for their growth and survival. The most important feature of the living habits of aphids is that they live in large groups and don’t migrate to other regions unless it is absolutely necessary. Some peculiar features of aphids assist them to reproduce quickly; and therefore, it is very difficult to eliminate them. Some aphid species are characterized by complex reproductive adaptations while others have simple reproductive features. Aphids also generally feed on plants regardless of day and night variations. Zoologists observed that wingless female aphids survive generations until hot weather comes or the plant they are living is destroyed. It has been also identified that some female aphids have the capacity to develop wings quickly and fly off. Evidences suggest that many aphid species are monaphagous (that means, they depend on only one plant species for food). They also passively depend on sap of phloem vessels in plants for food like their many fellow members of Hemiptera including scale insects and cicadas. According to Pompon, Quiring, Goyer, Giordanengo, Pelletier, aphids also feed on xylem sap as it is more dilute than phloem sap because of the difference in the concentration of sugars and amino acids. Since the consumption of dilute xylem sap assists aphids to rehydrate, it is suspected that aphids ingest xylem sap to maintain their water balance. However, recent studies have proven that aphids consume more xylem sap even when they are not dehydrated. However, scientists unanimously agree that plant sap is an unbalanced diet for aphids because it does not contain many essential components such as amino acids. Aphids mainly acquire amino acids from bacterial endosymbionts and bacteriocytes. Aphids can have great destructive effect on plants and the aphid damage ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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