Hoppers of North Carolina:
Spittlebugs, Leafhoppers, Treehoppers, and Planthoppers
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CICADELLIDAE Members: NC Records

Macrosteles quadrilineatus - Aster Leafhopper



© Ken Childs- note head markings

© Kyle Kittelberger

© Ken Childs

© Ken Childs- note head pattern
Taxonomy
Family: CICADELLIDAESubfamily: Deltocephalinae
Identification
Online Photographs: BugGuide                                                                                  
Description: A greenish leafhopper with a bold head pattern that is about 4-5 mm long, with females being 3.4-4.6 mm; some individuals can have brownish tints, especially on the wings. It has narrow wings and [typically] 6 bold black marks on the head: 4 lines (hence quadrilineatus) and 2 spots posterior to the lines (this species used to be known as the Six-spotted Leafhopper). Sometimes the number of marks is reduced to just 4 or 2 bold ones, with the spots not present on every individual; additionally, the boldness of the head markings can vary. The crown is also rounded. The scutellum has two small black triangles in the upper corners, though these 'triangle's can sometimes be reduced to just a small black base/line; in other individuals, the scutellum is entirely green. This species has very long wings for the genus, longer than related species, with the wings 4.5 x as long as wide. (Hamilton 1983)

Nymphs are greenish with some dark coloration, especially on the wing pagds. The crown shows black markings similar to those found on adults. For an image of a nymph associating with an adult, see: BG.

Distribution in North Carolina
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Out of State Record(s)
Distribution: Found throughout North America
Abundance: Scattered records across the state, likely more abundant in the right habitat, especially agricultural areas.
Seasonal Occurrence
Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
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Oct
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Dec
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Has been found in grassy, brushy areas. Abundant in agricultural areas as well.
Plant Associates: Asters and corn; polyphagous (BG)
Behavior: Can be attracted at night with a black light.
Comment: This species is a major agricultural pest and disease vector, and is one of the most common leafhoppers found in U.S. corn. It can transmit the semipersistant maize chlorotic dwarf virus and the persistent diseases maize rayado fino maya virus (MRFM), corn stunt spiroplasma (CSS) and maize bushy stunt phytoplasma (MBSP) (UF).

This species was previously confused with M. fascifrons, which is found in boreal Canada and the Northeastern United States. Records labeled as fascifrons have been entered here correctly as quadrilineatus.

Status: Native
Global and State Rank:

Species Photo Gallery for Macrosteles quadrilineatus Aster Leafhopper

Photo by: J. B. Sullivan
Yancey Co.
Comment:
Photo by: J. B. Sullivan
Yancey Co.
Comment:
Photo by: Ken Childs
Out Of State Co.
Comment:
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: male, 3.5 mm Walking along the muddy edge of a large pond I flushed a dense flurry over the course of 20 meters, one half-hearted sweep yielded 31.
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: male, 3.5 mm Walking along the muddy edge of a large pond I flushed a dense flurry over the course of 20 meters, one half-hearted sweep yielded 31.
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: male, 3.5 mm Walking along the muddy edge of a large pond I flushed a dense flurry over the course of 20 meters, one half-hearted sweep yielded 31.
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: male, 3.5 mm Walking along the muddy edge of a large pond I flushed a dense flurry over the course of 20 meters, one half-hearted sweep yielded 31.
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: male, 3.5 mm Walking along the muddy edge of a large pond I flushed a dense flurry over the course of 20 meters, one half-hearted sweep yielded 31.
Photo by: Ken Kneidel
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment: male, 3.5 mm Walking along the muddy edge of a large pond I flushed a dense flurry over the course of 20 meters, one half-hearted sweep yielded 31.
Photo by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Paul Scharf
Avery Co.
Comment: open area near mixed hardwood forest
Photo by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Paul Scharf
Avery Co.
Comment: open area near mixed hardwood forest
Photo by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Paul Scharf
Avery Co.
Comment: open area near mixed hardwood forest
Photo by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn, Paul Scharf
Avery Co.
Comment: open area near mixed hardwood forest
Photo by: Ken Childs
Out Of State Co.
Comment:
Photo by: Ken Childs
Out Of State Co.
Comment:
Photo by: Kyle Kittelberger
Wake Co.
Comment: grassy habitat