Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Philaenus spumarius
(meadow froghopper)



Philaenus spumarius (meadow froghopper)


  • Last modified
  • 03 January 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Pest
  • Vector of Plant Pest
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Philaenus spumarius
  • Preferred Common Name
  • meadow froghopper
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Metazoa
  •     Phylum: Arthropoda
  •       Subphylum: Uniramia
  •         Class: Insecta

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The adult is 1.9-2.3 mm across eyes and 5.2-6.9mm long
CaptionThe adult is 1.9-2.3 mm across eyes and 5.2-6.9mm long
The adult is 1.9-2.3 mm across eyes and 5.2-6.9mm long
AdultThe adult is 1.9-2.3 mm across eyes and 5.2-6.9mm longAgrEvo


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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Philaenus spumarius Linnaeus

Preferred Common Name

  • meadow froghopper

Other Scientific Names

  • Aphrophora spumaria (L.)
  • Aphrophora vittata (Fabricius)
  • Cercopis spumaria (L.)
  • Philaenus graminis (DeGeer)
  • Philaenus leucophthalmus (L.)
  • Philaenus lineatus (Fabricius)
  • Philaenus xanthocephalus (Schrank)
  • Ptyelus lineatus (Fabricius)
  • Ptyelus vittatus (Fabricius)

International Common Names

  • English: European spittle insect (Asia); meadow spittlebug
  • Spanish: cigarra espumosa; espumadora
  • French: cercope des pres

Local Common Names

  • Denmark: almindelig skumcikade
  • Finland: sylkikaskas
  • Germany: Weisenschaumzikade
  • Italy: afrofora spumosa; pan di cuculo; sputacchina; sputacchina comune; sputacchina media
  • Netherlands: Schuimbeestje
  • Norway: vanlig skumsikade
  • Sweden: vanlig spottstrit
  • Turkey: tukuruk bocegi

EPPO code

  • PHILSU (Philaenus spumarius)

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Metazoa
  •         Phylum: Arthropoda
  •             Subphylum: Uniramia
  •                 Class: Insecta
  •                     Order: Hemiptera
  •                         Suborder: Auchenorrhyncha
  •                             Unknown: Cercopoidea
  •                                 Family: Cercopidae
  •                                     Genus: Philaenus
  •                                         Species: Philaenus spumarius

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes


AfghanistanPresentNast, 1972
ArmeniaPresentNast, 1972
AzerbaijanWidespreadEmeljanov, 1972; Nast, 1972
ChinaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-GansuPresentNast, 1972
Georgia (Republic of)WidespreadEmeljanov, 1972; Nast, 1972
IranPresentYaghmaee, 2008
IraqPresentNast, 1972
JapanPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-HokkaidoPresentNast, 1972
-HonshuPresentNast, 1972
KazakhstanPresentNast, 1972
KyrgyzstanPresentNast, 1972
MongoliaPresentNast, 1972
SyriaPresentNast, 1972
TurkeyWidespreadEmeljanov, 1972; Nast, 1972


AlgeriaPresentNast, 1972
MoroccoPresentNast, 1972
TunisiaPresentNast, 1972

North America

CanadaPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-AlbertaPresentHamilton, 1982
-British ColumbiaWidespreadHamilton, 1982
-ManitobaPresentHamilton, 1982
-New BrunswickWidespreadHamilton, 1982
-Newfoundland and LabradorWidespreadHamilton, 1982
-Nova ScotiaWidespreadHamilton, 1982
-OntarioWidespreadHamilton, 1982
-Prince Edward IslandPresentHamilton, 1982
-QuebecWidespreadHamilton, 1982
USAPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-AlaskaPresentDoering, 1930
-CaliforniaWidespreadDeLong and Severin, 1950
-ColoradoPresentDoering, 1930
-ConnecticutPresentDoering, 1930
-DelawareWidespreadSchuster, 1942
-IllinoisPresentDoering, 1930
-IndianaPresentMüller, 1956
-MaineWidespreadDoering, 1930
-MichiganWidespreadHanna and Moore, 1966
-MinnesotaPresentDoering, 1930
-MississippiPresentDoering, 1930
-MissouriPresentDoering, 1930
-New HampshireWidespreadDoering, 1930
-New JerseyWidespreadDriggers and Pepper, 1935
-New MexicoPresentDoering, 1930
-New YorkWidespreadDoering, 1930
-North CarolinaPresentDoering, 1930
-North DakotaPresentDoering, 1930
-OhioPresentMüller, 1956
-OregonWidespreadBesse, 1938
-PennsylvaniaPresentCronin and Abrahamson, 2001
-South DakotaPresentHamilton, 1995
-UtahPresentDoering, 1930
-VermontWidespreadDoering, 1930
-WashingtonWidespreadHanson and Webster, 1941
-WisconsinWidespreadFisher and Allen, 1947


AlbaniaPresentNast, 1972
AustriaPresentNast, 1972
BelgiumPresentNast, 1972
BulgariaPresentNast, 1972
CroatiaPresentHorváth, 1891
CyprusPresentNast, 1972
Czech RepublicPresentNast, 1972
Czechoslovakia (former)PresentNast, 1972
DenmarkWidespreadNast, 1972; Ossiannilsson, 1981
EstoniaPresentNast, 1972
FinlandPresentNast, 1972
FrancePresentNast, 1972
-CorsicaPresentNast, 1972
GermanyPresentNast, 1972
GreecePresentNast, 1972
HungaryPresentNast, 1972
IcelandPresentEndrestøl, 2013
IrelandPresentNast, 1972
ItalyPresentNast, 1972
LatviaPresentGimmerthal, 1846
NetherlandsPresentNast, 1972
NorwayWidespreadNast, 1972; Ossiannilsson, 1981
PolandPresentNast, 1972
PortugalPresentNast, 1972
-AzoresPresentNast, 1972
RomaniaPresentNast, 1972
Russian FederationPresentPresent based on regional distribution.
-Central RussiaPresentNast, 1972
-Russian Far EastPresentNast, 1972
-SiberiaPresentNast, 1972
SlovakiaPresentNast, 1972
SloveniaPresentNast, 1972
SpainPresentNast, 1972
-Balearic IslandsPresentNast, 1972
SwedenWidespreadNast, 1972; Ossiannilsson, 1981
SwitzerlandPresentNast, 1972
UKWidespreadEmeljanov, 1972; Nast, 1972
UkraineWidespreadEmeljanov, 1972; Nast, 1972
Yugoslavia (former)PresentNast, 1972
Yugoslavia (Serbia and Montenegro)PresentGraeffe, 1903


New ZealandPresentHamilton and Morales, 1992

Growth Stages

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List of Symptoms/Signs

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SignLife StagesType
Stems / spittle mass
Whole plant / dwarfing

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Carabidae Predator Nymphs
Entomophthora aphrophorae Pathogen
Erynia petchii Pathogen
Verrallia aucta Parasite Adults
Zoophthora petchi Pathogen


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Anufriev GA; Emeljanov AF, 1988. Suborder Cicadinea (Auchenorrhyncha) - cicadas. In: Lera PA, ed. Key to the Identification of Insects of the Far East USSR, 2: Homoptera and Heteroptera. Leningrad, Russia: Nauka, 12-495.

Ben-Ze'ev I; Kenneth RG, 1981. Zoophthora radicans and Zoophthora petchi sp.nov. (Zygomycetes: Entomophthorales), two species of the 'sphaerosperma group' attacking leaf-hoppers and frog-hoppers (Hom.). Entomophaga, 26(2):131-142

Bernhard R; Marenaud C; Eymet J; Sechet J; Fos A; Moutous G, 1977. A complex disease of certain Prunus: 'Molieres decline'. Comptes Rendus des Seances de l'Academie d'Agriculture de France, 3(3):178-188

Besse RS, 1938. Agricultural research serves to relieve the tax burden. Oregon Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin 359.

Boucelham M; Raatikainen M, 1987. The effect of altitude, habitat and geographical location on the polymorphism of Philpnus spumarius (L.) (Hom. Cercopidae). Annales Entomologici Fennici, 53(3):80-86

Cronin JT; Abrahamson WG, 2001. Goldenrod stem galler preference and performance: effects of multiple herbivores and plant genotypes. Oecologia, 127(1):87-96.

DeLong DM; Severin HHP, 1950. Spittle-insect vectors of Pierce's disease virus, 1. Characters, distribution, and food plants. Hilgardia, 19(11):339-356.

Doering KC, 1930. Synopsis of the family Cercopidae (Homoptera) in North America. Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society, 3:53-64, 81-108.

Driesche RG van; Peters TM, 1987. Potential for increased use of biological control agents against pests of forage crops in Massachusetts. Research Bulletin - Massachusetts Agricultural Experiment Station, No. 718:75-86

Driggers BF; Pepper BB, 1935. The spittle insect or froghopper. New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin 593.

Drosopoulos S; Asche M, 1991. Biosystematic studies on the spittle bug genus Philaenus with the description of a new species. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society, 101(2):169-177

Emeljanov AF, 1972. Suborder Auchenorrhyncha cicadas. In: Insects and Mites, Pests of Agricultural Crops. Volume 1, Insects with Incomplete Metamorphosis. Leningrad: Nauka, 117-138.

Endrestøl A, 2013. Contribution to the Icelandic fauna of Auchenorrhyncha (Hemiptera, Fulgoromorpha & Cicadomorpha). Norwegian Journal of Entomology, 60(1):95-107.

Fisher EH; Allen TC, 1947. Spittle insect damage to alfalfa and red clover. Journal of Economic Entomology, 39:821-822.

Foster GN, 1977. Problems in cucumber crops caused by slugs, cuckoo-spit insect, mushroom cecid, hairy fungus beetle and the house mouse. Plant Pathology, 26(2):100-101.

Genite LP; Radzyavichyus BB, 1983. The development of froghoppers. Zashchita Rasteni, No. 11:27

Gimmerthal BA, 1846. Zur fauna der Ostseeprovinzen. Die Cicaden oder Zirpen. Correspondenzblatt des Naturforschenden Vereins zu Riga, 1:26-27.

Graeffe E, 1903. BeitrSge zur Cicadinenfauna des +sterr. Küstenlandes. Bollettino Societa Adriatica di Scienze Naturali in Trieste, 21:41-63.

Halkka O; Halkka L; Hovinen R; Raatikainen M; Vasarainen A, 1975. Genetics of Philpnus colour polymorphism: the 28 genotypes. Hereditas, 79:308-310

Halkka O; Raatikainen M; Vasarainen A; Heinonen L, 1967. Ecology and ecological genetics of Philaenus spumarius (L.) (Homoptera). Annales Zoologici Fennici, 4:1-18.

Hamilton KGA, 1979. Synopsis of the North American Philpnini (Rhynchota: Homoptera: Cercopidae) with a new genus and four new species. Canadian Entomologist, 111(2):127-141

Hamilton KGA, 1982. The insects and arachnids of Canada. Part 10. The spittlebugs of Canada. Homoptera: Cercopidae. The insects and arachnids of Canada. Part 10. The spittlebugs of Canada. Homoptera: Cercopidae. Minister of Supply and Services Ottawa, Ontario Canada, 102 pp.

Hamilton KGA, 1995. Evaluation of leafhoppers and their relatives (Insecta: Homoptera: Auchenorrhyncha) as indicators of prairie preserve quality. In: Hartnett DC, ed. Proceedings of the Fourteenth North American Prairie Conference: Prairie Diversity. Manhattan, USA: Kansas State University, 211-226.

Hamilton KGA; Morales CF, 1992. Cercopidae (Insecta: Homoptera). Fauna of New Zealand, No. 25:37 pp.

Hanna M; Moore TE, 1966. The spittlebugs of Michigan (Homoptera: Cercopidae). Papers of the Michigan Academy of Science, Arts and Letters, 51:39-73.

Hanson AJ; Webster RL, 1941. Insects of the blackberry, raspberry, strawberry, currant, and gooseberry. Washington Agricultural Experiment Station Popular Bulletin 164.

Harper G; Whittaker JB, 1976. The role of natural enemies in the colour polymorphism of Philaenus spumarius (L.). Journal of Animal Ecology, 45(1):91-104

Hewitt WB; Houston BR, 1941. Plant Disease Report, 25:474.

Honek A, 1984. Melanism in populations of Philpnus spumarius (Homoptera, Aphrophoridae) in Czechoslovakia. Vestnik Ceskoslovenske Spolecnosti Zoologicke, 48(4):241-247

Horváth G, 1891. Hemipterolo ki izlet u Primorje i na Plitvi ka jezera. Glasnik Hrvatskoga Naravoslovnogo Dru tva, 6:29-49.

International Commission on Zoogical Nomenclature, 1961. Opinion 590 Aphrophora Germar, 1821 (Insecta, Hemiptera): designation under the plenary powers of a type-species in harmony with accustomed usage. Bulletin of Zoological Nomenclature, 18:109-111.

Jenser G; Hegab AM; Dezsery M, 1981. Philpnus spumarius Linne as a vector of the causative pathogen of rubus stunt disease. Acta Phytopathologica Academiae Scientiarum Hungaricp, 16(1/2):233-237

Lees DR; Dent CS, 1983. Industrial melanism in the spittlebug Philpnus spumarius (L) (Homoptera: Aphrophoridae). Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 19(2):115-129

Lodos N; Kalkandelen A, 1981. Preliminary list of Auchenorrhyncha with notes on distribution and importance of species in Turkey. IV. Family Issidae Spinola. Turkiye Bitki Koruma Dergisi, 5(1):5-21

Luczak I, 1978. Studies of the damage caused to seed crops of sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia Scop.) caused by plant hoppers (Homoptera, Auchenorrhyncha). Biuletyn Instytutu Hodowli i Aklimatyzacji Roslin, 132:69-74.

Metcalf ZP, 1962. General Catalogue of the Homoptera, Fascicle VII. Cercopoidea, Part 3. Aphrophoridae. Baltimore, USA: Waverly Press.

Meyer M de; Bruyn Lde, 1984. On the phenology of some Pipunculidae (Diptera) in Belgium. Bulletin et Annales de la Societe Royale Belge d'Entomologie, 120(4/6):123-131

Müller HJ, 1956. Homoptera. In: Appel O, Blunck H, Richter H, Eds., Paul Sorauer[`s] Handbuch der Pflanzenkrankheiten, 5th edition. Berlin, Germany: Paul Parey, 5(3):150-359.

Nast J, 1972. Palaearctic Auchenorrhyncha (Homoptera) an annotated check list. Palaearctic Auchenorrhyncha (Homoptera) an annotated check list. Warsaw, Poland: Polish Scientific Publishers.

Osborn H, 1916. Studies of life histories of froghoppers of Maine. Maine Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin, 254:265-288.

Ossiannilsson F, 1981. The Auchenorrhyncha (Homoptera) of Fennoscandia and Denmark. Part 2: the families Cicadidae, Cercopidae, Membracidae, and Cicadellidae (excl. Deltocephalinp). Fauna Entomologica Scandinavica, 7(2):223-593

Purcell AH, 1980. Almond leaf scorch: leafhopper and spittlebug vectors. Journal of Economic Entomology, 73(6):834-838

Raatikainen M, 1971. The polymorphism of Philaenus spumarius (L.) (Homoptera) in northern Italy. Annales Entomologici Fennici, 37(1):72-79

Schuster GL, 1942. Important insects of the year and the peach yellows and little peach. Delaware Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin, 235:23-34.

Sikharulidze AM, 1977. Cicadas as eucalyptus pests and their control. Subtropicheskie Kul'tury, 3:90-92.

Smith SM; Ellis CR, 1983. Economic importance of insects on regrowths of established alfalfa fields in Ontario. Canadian Entomologist, 115(7):859-868

Stewart AJA; Lees DR, 1987. Genetic control of colour polymorphism in spittlebugs (Philpnus spumarius) differs between isolated populations. Heredity, 59(3):445-448

Stewart AJA; Lees DR, 1988. Genetic control of colour/pattern polymorphism in British populations of the spittlebug Philpnus spumarius (L.) (Homoptera: Aphrophoridae). Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 34(1):57-79

Thompson V, 1973. Spittlebug polymorphic for warning coloration. Nature, 242(5393):126-128.

Thompson V, 1988. Parallel colour form distributions in European and North American populations of the spittlebug Philpnus spumarius (L.). Journal of Biogeography, 15(3):507-512

Vlasov YuI; Samsonova LN; Bogoutdinov DZ, 1992. Circulation ways of tomato stolbur agent. Soviet Agricultural Sciences, No. 6:21-22; 4 ref.

Weaver CR; King DR, 1954. Meadow spittlebug. Ohio Agricultural Experiment Station Research Bulletin, 741.

Wightman JA; Whitford DNJ, 1984. Insecticidal control of some pests of culinary herbs. New Zealand Journal of Experimental Agriculture, 12(1):59-62

Yaghmaee F, 2008. Evaluation of biological activity of meadow spittlebug Philaenus spumarius (L.) (Cercopide: Homoptera) on Alhagi pseudalhagi (M. Bieb.) Desv. camel thorn plant in Mashhad region, Khorasan Razavi province, Iran. Research Journal of Biological Sciences, 3(8):845-849.

Zajac MA; Wilson MC, 1984. The effects of nymphal feeding by the meadow spittlebug, Philpnus spumarius (L.), on strawberry yield and quality. Crop Protection, 3(2):167-175

Distribution Maps

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