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A reasonably distinctively species in a large and difficult genus. Although the colour is variable, they typically show reddish-brown to black markings on a cream/white background. Young adults can be largely green. The forewing membrane is yellowish and somewhat opaque, and the wing tip relatively rounded (for Trioza) with a long outer vein. Antennae have segments I-III yellow, the remainder being dark. Genal cones are dark, slender and divergent, and the female terminalia are quite long for the genus.
The species is virtually ubiquitous on nettles across the UK, on which the strikingly-marked (unless freshly moulted) nymphs cause small, bladder-like galls. The adults overwinter, and there can be as many as four generations in the UK per year, such that nymphs can also be found virtually all year, at least in the south. Overwintering adults can be found on a variety of plants (including conifers), as well as on the few available nettles.
Adult: all year
Length 3-3.5 mm
|Adult female: Huddersfield (February 2008) ©Joe Botting|
|Adult female: Manchester (May 2008) ©Shane Farrell||Adult female: Huddersfield (November 2008) ©Joe Botting|
|Adult female: Huddersfield (March 2008) ©Joe Botting||Adult female: Devon (January 2013) ©Joe Botting|
|Adult female: Devon (January 2013) ©Joe Botting||Nymph: Devon (January 2013) ©Joe Botting|