Thysanoptera in Australia

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Female macroptera. Body and legs yellow, tergites VIII–X dark brown; antennal segments I–III yellow, V–VII brown, IV intermediate; fore wings pale with weak transverse markings. Antennae 7-segmented; III–IV with sensorium simple. Head large, slightly wider than long; 2 pairs of ocellar setae, pair III lateral to first ocellus; pair II of postocular setae displaced posteriorly out of row. Maxillary palps 2-segmented. Pronotum with 2 pairs of long posteroangular setae, 3 pairs of posteromarginals; discal setae small, but anterior margin with one pair of longer setae. Mesonotal median setae far ahead of posterior margin. Metanotum almost striate, median setae not at anterior margin. Prosternal basantra granulate, ferna weakly continuous; meso and metafurca with no spinula. Fore wing first vein with 3–4 setae on distal half. Tergite I with median setae long; II with one of the 4 lateral marginal setae weakly displaced toward midline; V–VIII with paired ctenidia, posteromesad of spiracle on VIII; tergite VIII posteromarginal comb represented by a few short microtrichia laterally. Sternites III–VII with about 12 discal setae.

Male macroptera. Similar to female in colour and structure; sternites III–VII with broad pore plate anterior to discal setae.

Related and similar species

The genus Bolacothrips currently includes 12 species from various parts of the Old World between Europe and Australia. These are grass-living thrips, and they have abdominal ctenidia that are essentially similar to those found in species of Thrips genus, although the antennal sensoria are simple not forked. B. pulcher is distinguished by the dark brown abdominal apex contrasting with the yellow colour of the rest of the body.

Distribution data

General distribution

Australia, New Caledonia.

Australian distribution

Queensland, New South Wales, Lord Howe Island, Australian Capital Territory, Northern Territory.

Biological data

Life history

Feeding and breeding on leaves.

Host plants

Native grasses (Poaceae).

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

Bolacothrips pulcher (Girault)

Original name and synonyms

  • Plesiothrips pulcher Girault, 1929: 3


Mound LA. 2011. Grass-dependent Thysanoptera of the family Thripidae from Australia. Zootaxa 3064: 1–40. http://www.mapress.com/zootaxa/2011/f/zt03064p040.pdf

Oz thrips taxa