Thysanoptera in Australia

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Female macropterous; body brown, tarsi and tibiae largely yellow; antennal segments I and III-IV yellow, also base of V; fore wing pale, with base shaded and two short brown cross bands. Head with sides paralle but constricted at base; ocellar hump prominent. Antennae 5-segmented, III and IV with sensorium simple, V–VIII fused. Pronotum with two transverse bands of reticulation, no long setae. Mesonotum with complete median longitudinal division. Metanotum with sculptured triangle weakly defined, walls of reticles thickened and irregular, median setae sometimes not visible. Fore wing major setae no larger than microtrichia; costal cilia well developed; wing apex curving slightly forwards. Abdominal tergite II sub-medially with small group of stout recurved microtrichia; median tergal setae minute, tergites III–VII with one pair of sigmoid setae, dorsoventral muscle insertion points circular, invaginated with many microtrichia; VIII with posteromarginal craspedum; tergite X asymmetric, median split complete. Sternites III–VII with muscle insertion points circular with many microtrichia.

Male similar to female; tergite IX setae S3 stout and elongate; sternites (IV)V–VIII with small pore plate close to anterior margin.

Related and similar species

Bhattithrips is an Australian genus that currently includes three species, but with a further species from northern Australia undescribed. There is remarkable diversity between species within the genus, with antennal sensoria forked or simple, the forewing setae minute or well developed, and the terminal antennal segments fused or more or less distinct. The closest relative is Sigmothrips from New Zealand.

Distribution data

Eastern Australia, between Melbourne and Brisbane

Biological data

Host plants

Not known, but several specimens taken on Bidens pilosa (Asteraceae)

Life history

Presumably breeding on leaves.

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Bhattithrips frontalis (Bagnall)

Original name and synonyms

  • Heliothrips frontalis Bagnall, 1916

Oz thrips taxa