Fauriellidae

Biology

Very little is known about the five species placed in the family Fauriellidae. Two species from South Africa are known only from the original material from which they were described. No host information is available for Fauriella natalensis, but Opisthothrips elytropappi was described from Elytropappus rhinocerotis, a species of Asteraceae. The females of this latter species differ from the other four species placed in Fauriellidae in having a remarkably weak ovipositor (Mound et al., 1980); this suggests that the females cannot insert their eggs into plant tissues but must deposit eggs superficially, possibly within the florets of their host. Parrellathrips ullmanae is also known from a single series of females, and these were collected together with larvae from the flowers of Garrya vealchii (Garryaceae) in California (Mound & Marullo, 1999). The two European species in this family, Ropotamothrips buresi and R. ressli, are possibly associated with Artemisia (zur Strassen, 2003).

Recognition

There is no single apomorphy shared by the known species of Fauriellidae, the five species showing a confusing pattern of character states found in other families. The antennae are similar to those of Merothripidae and Melanthripidae, with the distal segments distinct from each other, most segments bearing rows of microtrichia, and the sensoria at the apex of segments III and IV transverse. However, sternite VII in females is similar that of Thripidae, and the metanotal median setae arise close to the posterior margin as in Aeolothripidae.

Genus and species diversity

A total of four genera and five species are known in the Fauriellidae, see Mound's Thysanoptera pages.

Geographic distribution

Fauriella and Opisthothrips were described from South East Africa, Parrellathrips from California, and the two species of Ropotamothrips have been found across southern Europe between Spain and Georgia.

Systematics and classification

The Fauriellidae is one of eight families recognised in the Thysanoptera suborder Terebrantia.

The Fauriellidae is not characterised by any single feature, the four included genera showing a confusing pattern of character states that are intermediate between those found in several other families. There is thus no reliable basis for considering that the four genera represent a unique clade (Mound & Marullo, 1999).

Fauriellidae is referred to by Bhatti (2006) as the Hemithripidae, although Hemithrips Bagnall is based on a poorly preserved amber fossil on which few details can be observed (Mound & Morris 2007).

Families A-Z