Host-correlated morphological variation of Myzus persicae (Hemiptera : Aphididae) populations in Greece
Morphological variation in nine characters of 157 clones of Myzus persicae (Sulzer) was examined by multivariate analysis. The clones were collected from peach, Prunus persica, the primary host and the secondary hosts tobacco, Nicotiana tabacum, cabbage, Brassica oleracea, sugarbeet, Beta vulgaris and pepper Capsicum annuum. The 156 clones originated from various regions of Greece, both in the north, where a large part of the population has an annual bisexual generation on peach, and in more southerly regions, where populations are predominantly unisexual. One clone was collected from tobacco in Caserta, Italy. All clones were laboratory-reared on potato. Canonical variate analysis, hierarchical cluster analysis and a non-parametric classification tree method both revealed morphological differences associated with the host-plant on which they were collected. The scores of the first two canonical variates separated the tobacco-feeding clones from those originating from other secondary host-plants. However, in tobacco-growing areas the tobacco-feeding form predominated in spring populations on peach, and was sometimes found on other secondary hosts. In addition, using cluster analysis, the clones from tobacco which were sampled in the most southeasterly region showed a relatively large phenotypic distance from those collected further north and west. Moreover, clonal phenotypes were affected both by host plant and by long-term parthenogenetic rearing. However, in spite of these effects, the tobacco form was generally distinguishable from aphids originating from other hosts, indicating that the difference must have a genetic basis. In separate analyses of the clones originating from secondary hosts no association was found between morphology and either life cycle category or colour. Discriminant analysis showed that 89% of 1723 specimens could be correctly classified into the two groups.