Bean Aphid

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Bean Aphid


(Aphis fabae), an insect of the superfamily Aphidinea of the order Homoptera; a dangerous pest of beets, especially seed plants. The wingless or winged individuals measure about 2 mm long and are black with a bluish grey tint. Bean aphids are widespread in beet-growing regions. The insects reproduce not only on sugar beets but also on other crop plants, such as broadbeans, soybeans, vetch, sunflower, hemp, kidney beans, and safflower. They infest a number of weeds, including goosefoot, orache, amaranth, and thistle.

The bean aphid produces as many as 17 generations a year. The eggs overwinter on the common spindle tree, warty-barked spindle tree, viburnum, and jasmine. The larvae that emerge in April and May develop into wingless first-generation females, which produce two to four generations parthenogenetically. With the hardening of the tissues of the spindle tree and other host trees, winged individuals appear, which migrate to beets and other grassy plants and form large colonies on the underside of leaves and the stems of seed plants. The aphid reproduces parthenogenetically until autumn, at which time winged individuals migrate back to the trees.

The bean aphid retards the growth and development of agricultural plants by sucking out the juices. Some plants die as a result of infestation by the insect. Infested seed plants experience a sharp decrease in the yield and quality of seeds. The bean aphid is also a carrier of viral beet diseases. Control measures include destroying weeds in and near plantings and using phosphororganic insecticides.


Osmolovskii, G. E., and N. V. Bondarenko. Entomologiia. Leningrad, 1973.
Shkidnyky i khvoroby sil’s’kohospodars’kykh roslyn. Kiev, 1969. (In Ukrainian.)


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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