Thripidae: Panchaetothripinae: Parthenothrips dracaenae

Recognition data

Distinguishing features

Female macropterous; body and legs brown, tibiae and tarsi yellow, also antennal segments III–V; forewings with prominent reticulate pattern, dark brown area where first vein fuses to costa, both veins bearing a few long setae. Antennae 7-segmented, III and IV with simple sensorium. Head constricted at basal neck, dorsal setae broad but translucent. Pronotum with one pair of prominent posteroangular setae, also one pair of anteromarginals and one pair of posteromarginals, these setae flattened with prominent rhachis, as are major setae on forewing. Metanotal median setae near posterior margin. Tergites and sternites with broad craspedum; tergites with no sculpture medially, median setae minute. Male tergite IX with no strong setae; sternites IV or V–VII with large pore plate.

Related and similar species

Only one species is known in this genus, and the broad reticulate forewings with broadly flattened setae are unique amongst Thripidae. However, the Australian species Stosicthrips szitas also has broad forewings, and these two species share several character states.

Distribution data

General distribution

Widespread around world, and in temperate countries common on plants in domestic environments. Commonly considered to have originated in Africa, it is equally likely to have come from Australia where an apparently related species, Stosicthrips szitas, is endemic.

Australian distribution

Infrequent, but locally abundant in eastern areas, between Brisbane and Sydney; also on potted palms in houses.

Biological data

Host plants

Many different plant species, particularly Kentia palms, but other records include plants as diverse as Ficus species (Moraceae) and Emilia sonchifolia (Asteraceae), also the fern Adiantum formosum.

Life history

Adults and larvae usually on mature leaves rather than young leaves

Taxonomic data

Current valid name

  • Parthenothrips dracaenae (Heeger)

Original name and synonyms

  • Heliothrips dracaenae Heeger, 1854
  • Parthenothrips dracaenae var. concolor Uzel, 1895

Australian Species A-Z