Cicadellidae. Spanish: Chicharritas, cigarritas, loritos (General). Portuguese: Cigarrinhas.

All members of this varied family (Hamilton 1983, Nielson 1985) are small (BL less than 10 mm). They are slender in form and usually have thickened fore wings that display all the colors in dull uniform to highly variegate and bright patterns (e.g., the yellow-spotted Amblyscartidia albofasci-ata; fig. 8.lid, and multicolored Baleja flavoguttata; fig. 8.1 le). A distinguishing anatomical characteristic is a double row of spines along the hind tibia. They are active jumpers, and adults fly readily. Both

Figure 8.11 FROGHOPPERS (CERCOPIDAE) AND LEAFHOPPERS (CICADELLIDAE). (a) Frog-hopper (Tomapsis inca). (b) Sugarcane froghopper (Aeneolamia varia saccharina). (c) Froghopper nymph in froth nest, (d) Leafhopper (Amblyscartidia albofasciata). (e) Leafhopper (Baleja flavo-guttata). (f) Bean leafhopper (Empoasca kraemeri).

young and adults have the curious habit of running sideways.

All are plant feeders, piercing plant tissues and withdrawing sap. In so doing, they often cause damage by drying up the host. Like aphids, they also play an important role as vectors of plant diseases, particularly those caused by viruses (Maramo-rosch and Harris 1979), most often on species in the grass family. Such are members of the genus Dalbulus, which are the principal vectors of pathogens belonging to the corn stunt disease complex (Gámez and León 1985). Another very injurious genus in Latin America is Empoasca, with species (especially the very widespread lorito verde, E. kraemeri; fig. 8.1 If) that damage beans directly by their feeding (van Schoonhoven et al. 1985, Wilde et al. 1976). In earlier literature, E. kraemeri was confused with the North American E. fabae, from which it and a number of other Neotropical species have been segregated.

This is a large and diverse assemblage in Latin America with approximately 7,500 species in 25 subfamilies.


Gámez, R., and R León. 1985. Ecology and evolution of a Neotropical leafhopper-virus-maize association. In L. R. Nault and J. G. Rodriguez, eds., The leafhoppers and plant-hoppers. Wiley, Chichester. Pp. 331—350. Hamilton, K. G. A. 1983. Classification, morphology and phylogeny of the family Cicadel-lidae (Rhyncota: Homoptera). In W. J.

Knight, N. C. Pant, T. S. Robertson, and M. R. Wilson, eds. First international workshop on leafhoppers and planthoppers of economic importance. Commonwealth Inst. Entomol., London. Pp. 15—37. Maramorosch, K., and K. F. Harris. 1979. Leafhopper vectors and plant disease agents. Academic, New York. Nielson, M. W. 1985. Leafhopper systematics. In L. R. Nault and J. G. Rodriguez, eds. The leafhoppers and planthoppers. Wiley, Chichester. Pp. 11-39. van Schoonhoven, A., G.J. Hallman, and S. R. Temple. 1985. Breeding for resistance to Empoasca kraemeri Ross and Moore in Phaseolus vulgaris. In L. R. Nault and J. G. Rodriguez, eds., The leafhoppers and planthoppers. Wiley, Chichester. Pp. 405-422. Wilde, G., A. van Schoonhoven, and L. Gómez. 1976. The biology of Empoasca kraemeri on Phaseolus vulgaris. Entomol. Soc. Amer. Ann. 69: 442-444.

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