Print Fact SheetAptinothrips stylifer

Distinguishing features

Both sexes without wings. Body and legs yellow, antennal segments VI–VIII shaded brown, also apex of abdomen. Antennae 8-segmented; segment VI pedicilate, 1.5 times as long as V; segments III–IV each with a simple sense cone. Head and pronotum without long setae; head longer than wide, ocelli not developed; maxillary palps 3-segmented. Meso- and metanota transverse. Tarsi 2-segmented. Abdominal tergites and sternites with no posteromarginal craspedum; tergites without discal setae, III–VIII with 6 small setae in transverse row near posterior margin; tergite IX posteromedian setae about 0.6 times as long as lateral pair of setae; sternites with many discal setae.
Male similar but smaller; sternites without pore plates; tergite IX with 2 pairs of stout thorn-like setae. 

Related species

Four species are recognized in this European genus (Palmer, 1975; zur Strassen, 2003). These are all completely wingless, but differ in the number of segments on the antennae and tarsi, and also in details of the chaetotaxy on the tergites and sternites. Stannard (1968) referred to stylifer as the "stylifera-form" of rufus suggesting polymorphism in the number of antennal segments in rufus. However, these two species differ in the number of tarsal segments and the presence or absence of tergal discal setae. Despite this, Palmer (1975) illustrated aberrant antennae of rufus with 7 or 8 segments.

Biological data

Feeding and breeding on the leaves of various species of Poaceae.

Distribution data

Widespread in Britain, having been recorded from Kent to the Shetland Islands (Mound et al., 1976), as well as in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland (O'Connor, 2008). Widespread across Europe from Iceland and Norway to as far south east as Iran. Also found in northern USA, and in the mountains of New Zealand.

Family name


Species name

 Aptinothrips stylifer Trybom

Original name and synonyms

Aptinothrips stylifer Trybom, 1894: 43


Mound LA, Morison GD, Pitkin BR & Palmer JM (1976) Thysanoptera. Handbooks for the Identification of British Insects 1 (11): 1–79.

O’Connor JP (2008) A review of the Irish thrips (Thysanoptera). Irish Naturalists’ Journal 29: 20–24.

Palmer JM (1975) The grass-living genus Aptinothrips Haliday (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Journal of Entomology (B) 44 (2): 175–188.

Stannard LJ (1968) The thrips, or Thysanoptera, of Illinois. Bulletin of the Illinois Natural History Survey 29: 213–552.

zur Strassen R (2003) Die terebranten Thysanopteren Europas und des Mittelmeer-Gebietes. Die Tierwelt Deutschlands 74: 1–271.