Hey Buggy Joe!! What is it? - Beech Blight Aphids

posted by Ron Wilson -

David Gressley (Director of Horticulture, Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum) sent me a video yesterday morning of a chorus line of Beech Blight Aphids (Grylloprociphilus imbricator) shaking their woolly derrieres in a synchronous samba.  Frankly, I believe no other insect upstages this aphid in entertainment value.

 

The aphid nymphs enshroud themselves in a profuse mass of white, wool-like filaments.  Large numbers of these "woolly aphids" will gather together in prominent colonies and when disturbed, the aphids pulse their posterior ends in unison.  This peculiar behavior has earned the aphid the alternate common name of the "boogie-woogie aphid."  To see what I mean, just Google "boogie-woogie aphid" to watch several YouTube videos.

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Ron Wilson

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