Agricultural entomology: Strawberry aphids

Agricultural entomology: Strawberry aphids

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Classification and host plants

Class: Insects
Order: Rincoti
Suborder: Homoptera
Family: Aphidids
Genus: Chaetosiphon - Sitobion - Macrosiphum
Species: C. fragaefolii - S. fragariae - M. euphorbiae

Bibliographic reference:
Phytopathology, agricultural entomology and applied biology” – M.Ferrari, E.Marcon, A.Menta; School edagricole - RCS Libri spa

Host plants: Strawberry and other spontaneous plants.

Identification and damage

These three Strawberry Aphids are pinkish greenish with a size of 1-2 mm; they live in colonies on all the organs of the aerial apparatus causing both direct damages, with trophic punctures, and indirect damages for the remarkable production of honeydew. They are also vectors of viruses, transmitting Strawberry virosis.

Biological cycle

These aphids winter, generally, in the adult stage, in various shelters, among the host plants or at the margins of the cultivations on spontaneous plants.
In spring they resume activity at different times depending on whether colonization takes place in protected cultivation or in the open field.
During the year they play several generations, almost all parthenogenetic.

Strawberry aphid - Chaetosiphon fragaefolii (Cock) (photo

Strawberry aphids - Macrosiphum euphorbiae (photo T. Tago Guide of Insects in Saitama Chiba - Japan)


The fight against Strawberry Aphids applies different techniques according to the cultivation environment: biological control can be carried out in a greenhouse and in a protected environment; in the field the chemical fight takes place.

Biological struggle
The biological control in the greenhouse is carried out with flooding launches of the NeurotteroCrisopide: Chrysoperla carnea.
This insect is bred in many European biofactories; in Italy it is bred and marketed by Biolab di Cesena.
The fighting technique involves launching the larval stages which are active and voracious predators of Aphids; the larva of Chrysoperla camea is provided with a robust mouthparts, perforating sucker called forceps, with which it sucks the inside of the Aphids. The launch is carried out, after evaluating the presence of phytophages, introducing 18-20 larvae per m2, repeating it, possibly, in relation to the infestation. Currently, other insects are being tested, also for biological control in the greenhouse, including:

  • Aphidoletes aphidimyza: Diptera Cecidomide whose larvae are voracious predators of Aphids;
  • Aphidius matricariae and Ephedrus persicae: Hymenoptera parasitoid aphidids.

Chemical fight
In the open field biological control is still not feasible in a generalized way, therefore it is necessary to consider the possibility of guided chemical interventions, in case of real need (threshold of 10-15% infested leaves in pre-flowering, and 20-30% of infested leaves from flowering onwards).

Video: Scouting for Strawberry Aphids. Dépistage du puceron du fraisier (July 2022).


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