Female macroptera. Body yellow with pale grey markings laterally on pronotum and metascutellum, abdominal tergites with more extensive grey markings; pronotal setae dark; antennal segments III–VIII grey; fore wings pale with 2 small dark transverse bands, clavus dark except at apex. Antennae 8-segmented, III–IV with long forked sensorium. Head wider than long, without sculpture between ocelli; 3 pairs of ocellar setae present, pair III very long, arising on anterior margins of ocellar triangle; postocular setae small, pair I close together behind hind ocelli. Pronotum with 6 pairs of very long setae; one pair of discal setae on posterior third. Metanotum with weak reticulatiom, campaniform sensilla absent; median setae arising at anterior margin. Meso- and metafurca with spinula. Fore wing first and second veins each with 5–7 long setae; clavus with only 3 veinal setae, sub-terminal longer than terminal. Tergites with no sculpture medially; VIII without posteromarginal comb; X with no median longitudinal split. Sternites without discal setae, setae S1 on sternite VII arising in front of margin.
Male macroptera. Similar to female but smaller; sternites III–VIII with broadly transverse pore plate, shorter medially than laterally.
Currently 14 species are recognised in the genus Scolothrips, with two further species described from the Canary Islands considered unrecognisable. There remain problems with the identification of two North American species, S. pallidus and S. hoodi, and these are possibly colour variants of S. sexmaculatus. Reports of the later species from Australia are now recognised as misidentifications of S. rhagebianus.
Sudan, Transvaal, Mauritius, India and Australia.
Victoria, New South Wales, Westtern Australia, Northern Territory, Queensland.
Breeding on leaves, feeding on tetranychid mites.
Predator of various leaf-feeding mite species including Amblyseius sp. (Phytoseidae) on Zea mays, and Eutetranychus orientalis (Tetranychidae) on Citrus leaves.
Scolothrips rhagebianus Priesner
Mound LA. 2011. Species recognition in the genus Scolothrips (Thysanoptera, Thripidae), predators of leaf-feeding mites. Zootaxa 2797: 45-53. http://www.mapress.com/zootaxa/2011/f/zt02797p053.pdf