Pests in Wheat - In Crop
Constraint – Lucerne flea
Lucerne fleas are globular, wingless, 2-3 mm long with green, brown and yellow markings
They make jumping movements when disturbed
Young nymphs resemble the adults except in size
The cells of the upper surface of leaves are eaten, resulting in small ‘windows’ in the leaves
Severe infestations cause skeletonised leaves, with just the more fibrous veins remaining
Damage is often minor, but severe damage can retard seedling growth or kill seedlings
Cumulative damage may be severe where crop growth is slowed by cold, wet or dry conditions
Only when infestations are severe should lucerne flea be sprayed. In some instances, spot spraying with registered chemicals may be adequate. Several natural enemies such as mites, beetles and spiders prey upon lucerne fleas. Blanket spraying is harmful to these natural control agents.
Links and Resources
I Spy Manual - Lucerne flea
Page 108. Description, confused with/similar to, distribution, pest status and risk period, host range, damage, monitoring and sampling, and management. Published 2012.
Insectopedia - Lucerne flea
Description, biology, damage, monitoring, sampling, and control. Published 2000.