Predatory Thrips – Thysanoptera
Common Name: Predatory thrips
Appearance: Due to a large number of species present under this order, every species has its own appearance. They are usually 0.5-3 mm long and have slender bodies with short legs and antennae. Some of the predatory thrips are:
Banded Thrips: Have a Black body with three alternate white bands.
Black Hunter Thrips: Have dark brown to black body with white wings.
Six-spotted Thrips: Have a light brown body with 3 spots on each wing.
Franklino Thrips: Have a black body with a little bit of dark central patch and cannot be identified easily. They are found in avocado orchards.
Host Plants or Food: Thrips (Eggs, Nymph, Larvae, Adults), Midges, Mites, Aphids, Whiteflies, Lace bugs, and Scale insects.
Territory: Throughout North America, Australia.
Mode of Damage: Beneficial Garden Insect
Habits and Life History:
Predatory thrips live where there is prey for them. They are seen in gardens, orchards, ornamental gardens, tree fruit crops, and where infested plants are present.
They are not found in the orchards where the regular spray is not done.
Predatory thrips undergo four to five life stages depending on the species: Egg, Nymphs, Prepupa, Pupa, and then Adult.
Female lays eggs the spring starts approaching. Eggs are laid near the colonies of the prey.
After hatching, nymphs come out and start feeding on the insects just like their parents.
Then nymphs undergo the pre-pupal and pupal stage and finally develop into adult predatory thrips.