Pterochloroides persicae

Pterochloroides persicae (Cholodkovsky)

Common name: Black bark aphid, black peach aphid, brown peach aphid.

Taxonomic placing: Insecta, Hemimetabola, Hemiptera, Sternorrhyncha, Aphidoidea, Aphididae.

Geographical distribution: The Middle East, Eastern and Southern Europe, North Africa and India.

Host plants: Prunus spp., quince (Cydonia oblonga Mill.), and occasionally Citrus spp.

Morphology: Body of apterous viviparous female gray-brown, about 4 mm long, dorsum with 2 rows of longitudinal tubercles, and two rows of dark lateral spots. Siphunculi short, wide and dark. Alate viviparous female similar, but its thorax is black.

Life history: The pest lives and feeds on the bark and branches of the host trees, whereon, in warmer regions, it reproduces parthenogenetically the year around. In cooler areas males and oviparous females appear in autumn, and winter eggs are laid during winter. At 27ºC the pest can complete a generation in 2 weeks, its calculated threshold of development is around 7.5ºC, and it may raise about 20 annual generations. Peach appears to be its preferred host.

Economic importance: A serious pest of almonds, apricots and peaches. Heavy, ongoing infestations by thousands of aphids can kill trees. Damage is due to sucking sap from the bark and branches, which causes fruit drop, weakens the trees that thus produce little or no fruit and retards growth. In addition, the large amounts of excreted honeydew that is colonized by sootymold add to the damage.


Chemical control: Due to the aphids’ exposed position on bark and branches, their control is relatively straightforward, and can be achieved with pesticides {like imidacloprid) or certain plant extracts, provided they do not affect pollinating bees or the natural enemies.

Biological control: The braconid Pauesia antennata (Mukerji) is an effective parasitoid of P. persicae in Iran and North Africa, provided it is not killed by pesticides. The larvae of Cecidomyiidae, Chamaemyiidae, Coccinellidae and Syrphidae prey on P. persicae and greatly reduce its numbers. Several entomopathogenic fungi infect the aphid in Tunis and Israel, and may at times decrease its populations.


Ateyyat, M.A.and Abu-Darwish, M.S. 2009. Insecticidal activity of different extracts of Rhamnus dispermus (Rhamnaceae) against peach trunk aphid Pterochloroides persicae (Homoptera: Lachnidae). Spanish Journal of Agricultural Research 7: 160–164.

Ben-Ze’ev, I., Zelig, Y., Briton, S. and Kenneth, R.G. 1988. The Entomophthorales of Israel and their arthropod hosts: additions 1980–1988. Phytoparasitica 16: 247–257.

Darwish, E.T.E., Attia, M.B. and Kolaib, M.O. 1989. Biology and seasonal activity of giant brown bark aphid Pterochloroides persicae (Cholodk.) on peach trees in Egypt. Journal of Applied Entomology 107: 530-533.

Mdellel, L. and Ben Halima, K.M. 2015. Prospection and identification of natural enemies of Pterochloroides persicae Cholodovsky (Hemiptera, Aphididae) in Tunisia. Journal of Entomology and Zoology Studies 3: 278-282.

Mdellel, L., Ben Halima, M.K. and Rakhshani, E. 2015. Laboratory evaluation of Pauesia antennata (Hymenoptera: Braconidae), specific parasitoid of Pterochloroides persicae (Hemiptera: Aphididae). Crop Protection 4: 385-393.

Mdellel, L., Ben Halima, K.M. and Teixeira Da Silva, J.A. 2011. Effect of host plant and temperature on biology and population growth of Pterochloroides persicae (Cholodkovsky) (Hemiptera, Lachninae). Pest Technology 5: 74–78.

Mdellel, L., Guesmi, J., Kamel, M. B. H. 2015. Identification of two entomopathogenic fungi naturally infecting Pterochloroides persicae (Cholodkovsky 1899) (Hemiptera, Aphididae) in peach orchards in Tunisia. European Journal of Environmental Sciences 5: 158–160.

Rakhshani, E., Talebi, A.A., Stary, P., Manzari, S. and Rezwani, A. 2005. Redescription and information of Pauesia antennata (Mukerji) (Hym.,Brachonidae) parasitoid of Pterochloroides persicae (Chol., (Hom., Aphidoidea, Lachnidae). Journal of the Entomological Research Society 7: 59-69.

Swirski, E. and Amitai, S. 1999. Annotated list of aphids (Aphidoidea) in Israel. Israel Journal of Entomology 33: 1-120.

Talhouk, A. S. 1977.Contribution to the knowledge of almond pests in East Mediterranean countries. VI. The sap sucking pest. Zeitschrift für Angewandte Entomologie 83: 248-25.