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aphid-p1 - process reduces the plant’s food supply and...

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APHIDS There are many species of aphid. One of the most common is the ‘greenfly’ which is often seen on roses. At this stage in its life cycle, the aphid is a wingless female and it reproduces, not by laying eggs but by giving birth to fully formed nymphs which are, in effect, miniature adults. Wingless female aphid antenna compound eye proboscis Nymph Structure of proboscis saliva and food channels labium enclosing mouthparts piercing and sucking mouthparts section through leaf labium bent back When the aphid arrives on a suitable leaf, it thrusts its proboscis through the leaf tissue until it reaches the food-carrying cells in a vein. Saliva is injected which begins the process of digestion and the fluid is sucked up through the proboscis into the gut. This
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Unformatted text preview: process reduces the plant’s food supply and makes the leaves curl up and dry out. The aphid may also introduce harmful viruses into the plant so spreading disease. proboscis food-carrying cells Section through aphid’s head to show feeding process gut The aphids and the nymphs feed on the plant’s leaves and buds, sucking the sap by means of piercing and sucking mouthparts, the proboscis The plant sap contains abundant sugars but few amino acids. The excess sugar solution is ejected from the anus as ‘honey dew’. This fluid is keenly sought by ants which will often be seen in conjunction with an aphid infection. If the ‘honey dew’ remains on the leaves it encourages the growth of mildew fungus. © D.G. Mackean...
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