|Woolly aphid-- Mark Bower|
|Woolly aphids on a VWM log- Mark Bower|
|Insect trash talk- Mark Bower|
|Ready for take-off - Mark Bower|
The reproductive cycle of these woolly aphids which use two host plant species is complex, as explained by this Bugtracks article. Most species emerge as all females in the spring and reproduce parthenogenesis (without mating between the male and female). They give live birth(no eggs) several times in the spring and summer on the primary host plant. Winged forms then fly to the secondary host plant, reproduce again and eventually give birth to winged males and females which fly off to a primary host plant and mate, starting the whole process. If you think this confuses you, imagine being the aphid figuring our your family history.
Not all wooly aphids are warm fuzzy creatures. The larvae of the wooly beach blight aphids gather together when disturbed and poke their posteriors in the air, an aphid version of "mooning". It looks like dancing as seen in this video. This is no hollow threat as they are shown under the microscope to stab predators with their stylet mouth parts that are usually reserved for penetrating wood to sip sap. I guess if you usually drill into beach trees with your mouth, penetrating a predatory moth larva is a piece of cake.
The most complete source of information on aphids isaphidsonworldsplants.