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Lesson Nine

Biological Pest Control 9-3

Pest:

Thrips:

Thrips are found in crops all over the world. Crops are
attacked by a number of species of these small winged in-
sects. Larvae and adult insects feed on all above-ground
parts of the plant and, as a result, the tissue dies. Loss of
chlorophyll reduces yield. Serious attacks may result in
desiccation of leaves and damage to flowers and fruits. 
Thrips
can also transmit plant diseases.


Thrip


Due to their small size, the damage thrips do is usually spotted
before the thrips are noticed. Damage appears as small yellow
speckles on the leaves later followed by a silvery sheen on leaf
surfaces. The thrips feed by scraping at tender leaves, with
most damage occurring on new growth. They are only 1/12"
long, but can move very quickly. Adults look similar to a
small worm with wings. Thrips can also carry and transmit
plant disease.


Thrip damage on plant leaf

Biological Control:

Amblyseius cucumeris
and Orius laevigatus
Amblyseius cucumeris
is an effective predator of young thrip larvae. Orius laevigatus, another 
predator, is often applied in conjunction with Amblyseius because they kill adults and larger lar- 
val stages of thrips.


Amblyseius cucumeris 


Onus laevigatus

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