The primary pest thrips belong to the genus Frankliniella. These are the tobacco thrips [F. fusca (Hinds)], western flower thrips [F. occidentalis (Pergande)], and flower thrips [F. tritici (Fitch)]. Other species such as the onion thtips (Thrips tabaci Lindeman) occur incidentally.

Thrips are a pest of seedling cotton. They feed on the terminal tissues and can be particularly damaging when temperatures are cool. Thrips have “punch and suck” mouthparts that allow them to punch a hole in a leaf cell, insert their maxillary stylets, and suck up the cellular fluids. The ultimate impact of thrips injury on yield is highly variable. Cotton that is planted under good growing conditions can withstand relatively heavy infestations without suffering yield loss.


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