Skip to content

Thrips of California 2012

Plectrothrips crocatus

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Female fully winged. Body brown, with tarsi, tibiae and apices of femora yellow; tube yellowish brown; antennal segments II–VIII light brown; fore wings weakly shaded. Head slightly longer than wide, without sculpture medially; postocular setae arise near lateral margins, well behind eyes; maxillary stylets retracted to postocular setae, about one fifth of head width apart. Antennae 8-segmented; segment II with sensorium in basal half of segment; segments III–IV rather truncate at apex, III with 2 sensoria, IV with 3 sensoria; VIII slender, constricted to basal neck. Pronotum narrower than prothorax, only epimeral setae long. Fore tibia apparently with small tubercle at inner apex; fore tarsus with large tooth. Mid tibiae with stout apical spine; hind tibiae with two stout apical spines. Fore wings parallel sided, about 17 duplicated cilia present. Metanotum with faint linear reticulate sculpture; one pair of slender median setae. Pelta broadly triangular; tergite II strongly eroded laterally; tergites with one pair of weak sigmoid wing-retaining setae; tergite IX setae S1 about as long as tube; tube constricted apically. Sternites V–VII laterally with transverse row of iridescent reticulation presumably associated with glandular areas.

Related and similar species

The genus Plectrothrips currently includes 32 described species (Okajima, 1981), mainly from tropical countries. Four species are described from North America, two from Florida, one from Illinois, and one from California. Despite this, the four original specimens of P. crocatus from which this species is known could well be interpreted as large individuals of the Illinois species, P. antennatus, given that other members of this genus are known to be variable in size.

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Plectrothrips crocatus Cott

Original name and synonyms

  • Plectrothrips crocatus Cott, 1956: 80

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

Presumably western USA