Thysanoptera in Australia

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Female macroptera. Body and legs dark brown, tarsi yellow also apices of mid and hind tibiae and much of fore tibiae; antennal segments I–II and IV–IX dark brown, III yellow; fore wings pale with a dark submedian band, and a more diffuse dark area subapically on posterior margin; prominent body setae dark. Head as long as wide, smaller than pronotum; cheeks almost straight; mouth-cone long; eyes with 6 pigmented facets; ocellar setae III outside ocellar triangle, just anterior to hind ocelli; only 3 pairs of postocular setae. Antennae 9-segmented; segments III–IV with apex slightly constricted, sensorium forked; II without microtrichia, also III ventrally; VI with narrow pedicel; IX longer than VIII. Pronotum weakly trapezoidal, medial sculpture weak; with no long setae. Metascutum reticulate, median setae behind anterior margin, campaniform sensilla present. Prosternal ferna divided medially. Fore wing first vein with about 8 setae basally, then up to 10 setae placed irregularly; second vein with 11 to 16 setae including 1–2 setae basal to vein fork; clavus with 5–6 veinal setae and one basal seta. Abdominal tergites weakly sculptured laterally, without microtrichia; VIII posterior margin deeply concave, without comb; X longer than IX.

Male aptera. Bicoloured, head and abdominal segments VI–X dark brown, remainder and legs variably yellowish brown; tergite IX medially with two pairs of short stout setae; sternites III–VII with very large C-shaped pore plate.

Larva II. Body and legs yellow, tergite IX with faintly shaded posterior margin but no teeth; major setae slender trumpet shaped with apex asymmetric.

Related and similar species

There are 43 species of Anaphothrips known from Australia, out of a total of 79 species worldwide (Mound & Masumoto, 2009). Many of these species have the antennae clearly 9-segmented, others clearly have only 8 segments, but several species have an intermediate condition with segment VI bearing a partial and often oblique transverse suture. A occidentalis is a particularly large and dark species, with strikingly bicoloured fore wings and very large pore plates in males. It is unusual among Anaphothrips species for the wide separation medially of the prosternal ferna.

Distribution data

General distribution

Known only from Australia.

Australian distribution

Western Australia, New South Wales.

Biological data

Life history

Living and breeding in flowers.

Host plants

Various Haemodoraceae, including Conostylus sp. and Anigozanthos sp.

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Anaphothrips occidentalis Pitkin

Original name and synonyms

  • Anaphothrips occidentalis Pitkin, 1978: 364.


Mound LA & Masumoto M. 2009. Australian Thripinae of the Anaphothrips genus-group (Thysanoptera), with three new genera and thirty-three new species. Zootaxa 2042: 1-76.http://www.mapress.com/zootaxa/2009/f/zt02042p076.pdf

Oz thrips taxa