Unusual behaviour – unusual morphology: mutualistic relationships between ants (Hymenoptera: Formicidae) and Diaphorina enderleini (Hemiptera: Psylloidea), associated with Vernonia amygdalina (Asteraceae)
Désirée Chantal Aléné, Champlain Djiéto-Lordon and Daniel Burckhardt
Diaphorina enderleini Cameroon, Ethiopia and Kenya. Observations and records from Cameroon and Ethiopia show that it developson Vernonia amygdalina. The species is diagnosed and the last instar larva is described and illustrated. Thelarvae lack a functional circumanal ring and do not produce wax, a feature unusual for psyllids. The lackof wax deprives them of the protection common in various free-living psyllids. Consequently the psyllid is involved in an unusual mutualistic interaction with the ants Pheidole megacephala and Crematogaster striatula. This association is described and discussed.
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