Activity of aphids associated with lettuce and broccoli in Spain and their efficiency as vectors of Lettuce mosaic virus

Virus Res. 2004 Mar;100(1):83-8. doi: 10.1016/j.virusres.2003.12.016.


This research sought to identify the aphid virus vector species associated with lettuce and broccoli crops in Spain, and to determine their population dynamics and ability to transmit Lettuce mosaic virus (LMV). Green tile traps and Moericke yellow water-pan traps were used to monitor aphid flights during the spring and autumn growing seasons of 2001. Aphid species feeding on lettuce were counted weekly. The transmission efficiencies of LMV were determined for the aphid species caught most frequently. The Moericke traps generally caught more aphid species than the tile trap, but the latter was the most suitable to estimate flight activity of species involved in virus spread. Spring aphid catches indicated that the main aphid species landing on lettuce in the regions of Madrid and Murcia was Hyperomyzus lactucae, but Brachycaudus helichrysi was also abundant in both regions. In broccoli in the Navarra region, the most abundant species in spring were Aphis fabae, B. helichrysi and H. lactucae. In autumn-sown crops, the main species landing on lettuce in the Madrid region were Hyadaphis coriandri and Aphis spiraecola. In Murcia, A. spiraecola and Myzus persicae were the most abundant, while in Navarra, Therioaphis trifolii, and various Aphis spp. were the most numerous landing on broccoli. The main aphid species colonising lettuce was Nasonovia ribisnigri, but other less abundant colonising species were Aulacorthum solani and Macrosiphum euphorbiae. The most efficient vectors of LMV were M. persicae, Aphis gossypii and M. euphorbiae, while A. fabae and H. lactucae transmitted with low efficiency, and Rhopalosiphum padi and N. ribisnigri did not transmit. Occurrence of LMV epidemics in central Spain in relation to aphid flights and the role of weeds as virus reservoirs is discussed.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Aphids / virology*
  • Brassica / virology*
  • Insect Vectors / virology*
  • Lettuce / virology*
  • Potyvirus / genetics*
  • Potyvirus / isolation & purification
  • Potyvirus / physiology
  • Spain