Print Fact SheetChirothrips hamatus

Distinguishing features

Female fully winged. Body, antennae and legs brown, tarsi and antennal segment II paler, fore wings light brown. Head small, pre-ocular prolongation short; 3 pairs of ocellar setae present, pair III anterolateral to fore ocellus; maxillary palps 3-segmented. Antennae 8-segmented; segment II symmetric, not prolonged laterally; segments III–IV each with simple pointed sense cone. Pronotum trapezoidal, 2 pairs of prominent posteroangular setae. Metanotum reticulate, median setae not at anterior margin, smaller than lateral pair; campaniform sensill present. Fore femur with apical external margin sharply recurved and hook-like. Fore wings pointed; first vein distal half with 2 widely-spaced setae, second vein with about 5 setae. Abdominal tergites with transverse sculpture lines medially; posterior margin with complete craspedum with margin lobed to weakly toothed; ovipositor strong with prominent teeth. Sternites II–V posterior margin with distinctive tubercles, present only laterally on VI–VII.
Male with small wing lobe; head without ocelli; sternites III–VII with large transverse pore plate.

Related species

Currently there are 42 species worldwide placed in the genus Chirothrips. In contrast, zur Strassen (1960) treated the genus in a broad sense, with a key to 50 species, whereas Bhatti (1990b) placed several of the species into six new genera, and the generic classification was further reviewed by Nakahara & Foottit (2012). From Europe, zur Strassen (2003) recognised 14 species of Chirothrips, of which five have been taken in Britain. C. hamatus is the only British species in which antennal segment II is clearly symmetrical.

Biological data

Each larva feeds and pupates within a single flower of its host plant, and these include Poaceae in several genera, particularly Alopecurus (Minaei & Mound, 2010).

Distribution data

Locally common in England and Scotland, from Kent to Inverness (Mound et al., 1976), but widespread in the northern Palaearctic, and also recorded from North America.

Family name


Species name

Chirothrips hamatus Trybom

Original name and synonyms

Chirothrips hamatus Trybom, 1895: 187
Chirothrips dudae Uzel, 1895: 83
Chirothrips hamatus f. adusta Hukkinen, 1935: 62
Chirothrips hamatus f. albicornis Hukkinen, 1935: 62
Chirothrips hamatus f. aptera Hukkinen, 1935: 89
Chirothrips hamatus f. aurata Hukkinen, 1935: 90
Chirothrips hamatus f. testacea Hukkinen, 1935: 90


Bhatti JS (1990b) On some genera related to Chirothrips (Insecta: Terebrantia: Thripidae). Zoology (Journal of Pure and Applied Zoology) 2 (4): 193–200.

Minaei K & Mound LA (2010) Grass-flower thrips of the genus Chirothrips (Thysanoptera: Thripidae), with a key to species from Iran. Zootaxa 2411: 33–43.

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

Nakahara S & Foottit RG (2012) Review of Chirothrips and related genera (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) of the Americas, with descriptions of one new genus and four new species. Zootaxa 3251: 1–29.

zur Strassen R (1960) Key to and catalogue of the known species of Chirothrips Haliday, 1836 (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Journal of the Entomological Society of South Africa 23 (1): 144–176.

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