Print Fact SheetParthenothrips dracaenae

Distinguishing features

Both sexes fully winged. Body and femora brown, tibiae and tarsi yellow; antennal segments I–V largely yellow; fore wing mainly pale, small dark cross band in basal half with a diffuse shaded area on distal half. Antennae 7-segmented, VII slightly shorter than VI; III & IV each with a short, simple sense cone. Head strongly reticulate, cheeks constricted to basal neck; 3 pairs of translucent postocular setae. Pronotum reticulate, with 1 pair of flattened postero-angular setae. Mesonotum reticulate on anterior half, lateral setae minute. Metanotum reticulate medially, median setae arise on posterior half. Tarsi 1-segmented. Fore wing broad with constriction in basal third, membrane reticulate; veinal setae translucent, broad with thickened median rhachis; costa without cilia, postero-marginal cilia wavy. Abdominal tergites without craspeda, with weak reticulation laterally, median setae small; VIII with no marginal comb of microtrichia; tergite X with complete median division. Sternites with 3 pairs of small marginal setae.
Male similar to female; sternites IV–VII with circular pore plate, larger on posterior sternites.

Related species

There is only one species in the genus Parthenothrips, and no other thrips is known with such distinctive reticulate fore wings.

Biological data

Larvae and adults feed on the leaves of a wide range of plants, most of which have hard leaves. Frequently associated with the leaves of the cultivated palm, Howea forsteriana (=Kentia palm or Parlour palm), but also commonly found on the fern Adiantum spp. The larval fecal deposits often soil the leaves, and pupae also occur on leaves.  

Distribution data

Widely distributed around the world. The area of origin is not known, but it was possibly Australia where the species is locally common in forests along the East coast.

Family name


Species name

Parthenothrips dracaenae (Heeger)

Original name and synonyms

Heliothrips dracaenae Heeger, 1854: 365
Parthenothrips concolor Uzel, 1895: 172


Wilson TH (1975) A monograph of the subfamily Panchaetothripinae (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Memoirs of the American Entomological Institute 23: 1–354.