Androthrips ramachandrai (Thysanoptera: Phlaeothripidae): An Introduced Thrips in the United States

David W. Boyd Jr., David W. Held

Abstract


Androthrips ramachandrai Karny is an exotic thrips, assumed to be predacious, and is associated with gall-inducing thrips. It was first reported in the U.S. from FL, and intercepted in CA from Thailand in 2002. We surveyed Ficus spp. with Gynaikothrips-induced galls in AL, CA, FL, HI, LA, MS, and TX, and document that A. ramachandrai is now established in CA, FL, HI, and TX. It probably has been spread by the ornamental horticulture industry. We outline its biology and compare it to a congener A. flavipes, a documented thrips predator. Androthrips ramachandrai has the potential to be a beneficial biological control agent and a hindrance to weed biological control.

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