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Thrips of California 2012

Neurothrips magnafemoralis

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Both sexes fully winged. Body largely brown, but abdominal segments VIII–IX and basal half of tube yellow; tarsi yellow, mid and hind tibiae yellow at base and apex; antennal segments III–V yellow in basal half but brown distally, VI yellow; fore wing pale with long thin median brown line. Head reticulate, much broader across cheeks than across eyes; cheeks with prominent tubercles; eyes large; postocular setae small, capitate, posterior to inner margin of eye; maxillary stylets retracted to eyes, close together medially. Antennae 8-segmented; segments III–VI constricted to apical neck, III–IV with three stout sensoria; VIII closely joined to VII. Pronotum reticulate; five pairs of short, capitate major setae. Fore tarsus with prominent tooth; fore femora with sub-apical tubercle on inner margin. Metanotum reticulate, with more than 20 fine setae. Fore wing bent at an angle beyond sub-basal setae, narrow, parallel sided, with no duplicated cilia. Pelta quadrate, with distinctive median area of sculpture; tergites III–VII each with three pairs of flattened, sigmoid wing-retaining setae; tergite IX setae shorter than tube; anal setae considerably longer than tube.

Male smaller than female; fore femora swollen; sternite VIII with narrow transverse pore plate.

Related and similar species

The genus Neurothrips includes six species, three from the Neotropics, one from Mexico, and two from North America. A key to these species is provided by Mound & Marullo (1996), who indicate that N. punanus Stannard from Mexico is probably only a pale form of N. magnafemoralis. This widespread species differs from N. apache in having the tube dark brown in the distal half or more; moreover the male has a single slender pore plate medially on sternite VIII.

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Neurothrips magnafemoralis (Hinds)

Original name and synonyms

  • Acanthothrips magnafemoralis Hinds, 1902: 199

Family placement

Phlaeothripidae, Phlaeothripinae

Biological data

Life history

Breeding on dead branches.

Host plants

Unidentified fungal hyphae on dead branches

Tospoviruses vectored


Crop damage


Distribution data

Area of origin

Southern USA


Widespread across USA from North Dakota to New York, and California to Florida, but apparently not typical of the Western States.