Parlour Palm Thrips

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Scientific name

Parthenothrips dracaenae (Heeger)

Family

Thripidae (subfamily Panchaetothripinae)

Synonyms

Heliothrips dracaenae Heeger, Parthenothrips concolor Uzel

Description

Adult (female): Body golden brown with heavy reticulate sculpture; antennae with 7 segements; forewings exceptionally broad, more than half as long as abdomen; head strongly reticulate; tarsi and tibiae yellow; pronotum reticulate, with 1 pair of flattened posterior angular setae.

Diagnostic features

Body golden brown with heavy reticulate sculpture. Forewings broad with reticulate sculpture and dark banding. Head wider than long.

Distribution

Possibly native to Australia. Now widespread throughout the tropics and subtropics, as well as in greenhouses in temperate areas.

Hosts

Palms: a diversity of palms

Other: a wide range of plants, many with hard leaves.

Additional comments

Not known to be a vector of diseases.

Damage can be detected by leaves being silvered, browned, and scarred.

Parlour palm thrips is the first species of thrips found to be capable of parthenogenetic reproduction. Populations are mainly composed of females.

Definitive species identification requires at least a dissecting microscope with 40x magnification. Often, slide mounted specimens are required for verification.

Also commonly referred to as palm thrips.

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