Biology and distribution
Described from South Africa (S. aurantii) and Ghana from Acacia sieberiana (S. acaciae).
Distribution: Widespread over Africa from South Africa (including Madagascar, Reunion and Mauritius) to Egypt and Yemen in the north, also West Africa and Cape Verde Islands; introduced into Queensland, Australia. EPPO quarantine species (A1) in the Netherlands and in Great Britain on imported plants.
Scirtothrips aurantii is highly polyphagous and has been recorded on plants from over 30 families. It is considered a pest on mango (Mangifera indica), but particularly on Citrus. Feeding results in distortion of young leaves, but of greater economic importance is the surface scarring on citrus fruits leading to downgrading of a crop.
Faure JC (1929) The South African citrus thrips and five other new species of Scirtothrips Shull. Transvaal University College Bulletin (Pretoria) 18: 1–18.
Moulton D (1930) Thysanoptera from Africa. Annals and Magazine of Natural History (10)5: 194–207.
Mound LA & Palmer JM (1981) Identification, distribution and host-plants of the pest species of Scirtothrips (Thysanoptera: Thripidae). Bulletin of entomological Research 71: 467–479.
Morris DC & Mound LA (2004) Molecular relationships between populations of South African citrus thrips (Scirtothrips aurantii Faure) in South Africa and Queensland, Australia. Australian Journal of Entomology 43: 353–358.
Mound LA & Stiller M (2011) Species of the genus Scirtothrips from Africa (Thysanoptera, Thripidae). Zootaxa 2786: 51–61.
Holotype ♀ (S. acaciae): California Academy of Sciences, San Francisco.