About Thrips


Thrips are a common pest in many greenhouse crops and can cause significant damage to flowers and fruit making them unmarketable. The most common thrips is the Western flower thrips (Franklinella occidentalis); though some other less common species can be found, including Echinothrips (Echinothrips americanus) and Onion thrips (Thrips tabaci). Biology: Thrips go through 6 developmental stages, egg, two larval stages, pre-pupal, pupal and adult. Thrips females lay their eggs inside the cuticle tissue of the plants, and these sites are not always visible. The larval stages of thrips are very mobile and can feed on all above ground parts of the plant. After the larval stages, the thrips drop to the ground where they pupate, except for Echinothrips, which pupate on the leaves.

Symptoms and Signs:

Thrips feed on the leaf by sucking out the cell liquids, which is then replaced with air. This gives a characteristic silvering of the leaf tissue, often with dark green to black specks (frass). Thrips can also cause deformation and discolouration of young cucumber fruit and flowers and discolouration of other vegetables like peppers and tomato. The number of thrips present in the crop does not need to be high to have noticeable damage. Most importantly, thrips can also carry viruses which can be devastating to crops.


Some products that can be used to combat thrips are: Swirskii, Cucumeris, Orius, Atheta, Nematodes, Californicus and Degenerans. For more information on these thrips products and more please visit our Products section. Back to Pests