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Bug of the Week: Rose Aphids

Aphids are typically active only during the cool part of the spring season in Arizona, so now is when we see aphids.

Every wonder how aphids show up? After all, it looks like they don’t have wings.

rose aphids

These are rose aphids. Aren't they a lovely pink color? By the way, the long tubes on their backs are called cornicles. Aphids emit chemicals from the cornicles. Some of the chemicals alert other aphids of danger (alarm pheromones) and/or actually deter enemies (defensive compounds).

The first aphids to arrive on your plants do have wings, like this one. They aren't strong fliers and mostly they are carried in the wind.

rose aphids

The winged ones quickly have live babies.  Unlike most insects, these aphids do not lay eggs during this part of the life cycle.

I've circled the baby aphids in this photo.

rose aphids

I'm not worried about seeing these aphids. Even if I do nothing at all, they will disappear as the weather warms up.

For more information, try:

Cicadas and Aphids: What They Have in Common (Animals in Order Series) by Sara Swan Miller


Aphids (Blastoff! Readers: World of Insects) by Colleen Sexton


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