Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Biological and genetic features of introduced aphid populations in agroecosystems.

Abstract

In agroecosystems, introduced aphids that reproduce by obligate parthenogenesis (OP) show strong biased representation of a few genotypes (superclones), whereas species with cyclical parthenogenesis (CP) exhibit the opposite trend with many unique genotypes. We analyzed the biological and genetic features of 23 different aphid species introduced in different geographic areas and climates, finding putative superclones in about 60% of them. We have examined the proximal causes for aphid establishment and spread after their introduction, and found that OP, host availability, and phenotypic plasticity are among the main variables underpinning the ability of aphids to succeed in new geographic areas, which may explain the high potential for invasion in this group of pest insects.