The Russian wheat aphid, Diuraphis noxia (Kurdjumov) (Hemiptera: Aphididae), is a serious wheat, Triticum aestivum L., and barley, Hordeum vulgare L., pest throughout the small grain-producing areas in the western United States. The virulency and classification of recently described Russian wheat aphid biotypes 1–7 (RWA1-7) were clarified using 24 plant differentials. These seven biotypes had been described previously using various methods and test environments; therefore, the purpose of this study was to test them all under uniform environmental conditions. RWA1 was the least virulent of the biotypes tested, with susceptible ratings observed in five plant differentials and intermediate ratings observed in four plant differentials. RWA4, RWA5, RWA6, and RWA7 had intermediate virulence. RWA4, RWA5, and RWA7 share similar responses, with susceptible responses in six plant differentials and intermediate responses in five plant differentials. Small differences within a few plant differentials separate RWA4, RWA5, and RWA7. RWA6 has susceptible responses with only four plant differentials, but 10 plant differentials had intermediate responses. RWA3 was highly virulent, with susceptible responses in 10 plant differentials and intermediate responses in five plant differentials. RWA2 was the most virulent strain tested with susceptible responses to 12 plant differentials and intermediate responses to five plant differentials. This study has demonstrated that RWA1-7 have different combinations of virulence to the plant differentials tested, thereby confirming previous Russian wheat aphid biotype designations.
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Vol. 102 • No. 5