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Thrips of California 2012

Retithrips syriacus

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Body dark brown, tarsi yellow, antennal segment III yellowish brown, segment V almost white; fore wing grey with three brown swellings. Body shape distinctive, with pterothorax unusually broad. Head wider than long, ocelli on conical projection, posteromedian area reticulate. Antennae 8-segmented, but segments VI–VIII sometimes without dividing sutures; III & IV each with forked sensorium that lacks a basal stem and arises in large pit. Pronotum exceptionally short. Mesonotum without longitudinal division. Metanotum with ;broad reticulate triangle, one pair of setae near posterior. Tarsi 1-segmented. Forewing broad, with 3 swellings along costal margin; costa without cilia; posteromarginal cilia straight. Tergites III–X grooved medially, III–VIII with 1 pair of large median setae; VIII with long posteromarginal comb of microtrichia; sternal marginal setae small.

Related and similar species

Only two species are recognised in the genus Retithrips, the second being known only from Indonesia and northern Australia. The fore wings of these two species are highly distinctive, bearing two or more curious blister-like swellings. The antennal segments are foreshortened, but the sensoria on segments III & IV are forked at the base. Despite these differences, the most closely related genus is probably Heliothrips.

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Retithrips syriacus (Mayet)

Original name and synonyms

  • Thrips (Heliothrips) syriacus Mayet, 1890: 451
  • Retithrips aegyptiacus Marchal, 1910: 17
  • Dictyothrips zanoniana Del Guercio, 1918: 106
  • Stylothrips bondari Bondar, 1924: 46

Family placement

Thripidae, Panchaetothripinae

Common names

Vine thrips, Rose thrips

Biological data

Life history

Breeding on leaves, usually on older leaves not newly emerged foliage.

Host plants

Many different plants, including roses, grapevines, Ricinus, cassava, cotton and Eucalyptus (Wilson 1975).

Tospoviruses vectored


Crop damage

Damaging the leaves of a wide range of plants.

Distribution data

Area of origin

Old World tropics


Widespread in Africa and India; established in Brazil, and recorded from Florida.