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Thrips of California 2012

Psilothrips pardalotus

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Female fully winged. Body yellow to light brown, head and pronotum usually mottled; fore wings weakly shaded. Head wider than long, ocellar region raised; three pairs of ocellar setae present, pair III on sides of triangle; compound eyes with six pigmented ommatidia. Antennae 8-segmented; segments III–IV with small forked sensorium. Pronotum with irregular transverse sculpture lines; one pair of prominent posteroangular setae, posterior margin with two pairs of setae. Metanotum with concentric reticulation on posterior half; median setae far back from anterior margin. Fore wing relatively broad; first vein with two setae distally, second vein with about 8 setae; costa with setae but no cilia; apex with small sub-apical lobe bearing many long microtrichia ventrally. Abdominal tergites with transverse reticulation medially; tergites II–VIII with median setae arising on antecostal ridge, longer than distance between their bases; tergites IV–VI with striate sculpture laterally bearing a few short microtrichia; tergite VIII with no posteromarginal comb. Sternites III–VII with about eight discal setae.

Related and similar species

The genus Psilothrips includes five species, one from India, two from the Mediterranean region and two from western USA. These species are unusual in having a pair of long setae medially on each tergite that arise from the antecostal ridge.

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Psilothrips pardalotus Hood

Original name and synonyms

  • Psilothrips pardalotus Hood, 1927: 198

Family placement

Thripidae, Thripinae

Biological data

Life history

Possibly feeding on leaves.

Host plants

Atriplex, Allenrolfea, Sarcobatus vermiculatus (Chenopodiaceae)

Tospoviruses vectored


Crop damage


Distribution data

Area of origin

Western USA


California, Arizona, Texas