Thrips are the smallest winged insects, and there are about six species of Thrip that cause damage to plants in greenhouses and indoor growing. Thrips have six stages in their life cycle; egg, two larval stages, pre-pupa, pupa and adult. The larvae and the adults feed on plants. The adults are tiny, dark coloured, pencil shaped insects, often found in flowers. The larvae are often found on the leaves. The Thrip pierce plants when feeding, causing plant tissue to die. This will be evidenced by silvery scratches on leaves with tiny black marks on.
Amblyseius swirskii is an effective predator of various Thrip species. This predatory mite feeds on multiple stages of the Thrip larvae present on the plant foliage itself.
These swirskii predators are supplied in a loose carrier material for instant release onto infestations. If Thrips are present in large numbers we advise a combined application of loose Amblyseius swirskii and Amblyseius swirskii sachets to tackle the infestation.
Severe Thrip infestations may require more than one application of predators. If the Thrip are still visibly present, allow 7-10 days and re-apply the loose Swirskii. Once the infestation is controlled switch to our sachets to avoid further outbreaks.
The Amblyseius swirskii predator outperforms the alternative Amblyseius cucumeris (provided it is used in the suitable temperature conditions) in killing Thrip. The swirskii predators will kill the larger stages of the Thrip larvae, where the cucumeris does not, and in doing so will eliminate more generations of the Thrip population. Swirskii mites will also consume Whitefly eggs, and so provides an additional protection. The swirskii do, however, require higher temperatures to be active than the cucumeris (20℃ plus).
We advise using loose swirskii when Thrip is already present on the plant. This immediately releases a large number of active predators to bring infestations under control.
Amblyseius swirskii are active at temperatures over 20℃ and are tolerant to high temperature environments. This makes them ideal for use in glasshouses, polytunnels, and indoor growing environments. The relative humidity should be around 70% (lower levels can result in lower egg hatch rates).
We recommend the following application rate based on an average plant height of 1m:
Light infestation: 200 mites per plant
Heavy infestation: 500 mites per plant
Repeat applications should be used against heavy infestations. Introduce fresh predators every 7-10 days until the infestation is controlled.
Ensure the swirskii are released in identifiable hot spots of Thrip activity. The swirskii are supplied in shaker bottles, so you can apply the predators by rotating the bottle and gently shaking the contents directly onto the infested leaves of the plants.
Swirskii can also be applied using our Dragonfli Distribution Boxes, which will be more effective for larger plants. Distribute the shaker bottle contents into your boxes and hang them on the stems or leaves of your plants. The boxes act as small breeding sites for the predators and they will then proceed to exit the boxes and move around the plants.
Repeat applications may be required to maintain swirskii populations or if the Thrip numbers were high when the predators were first applied.
Full instructions are provided on delivery.
Warning: Amblyseius swirskii is a non-native predator and can only be applied indoors and in glasshouses. By purchasing this product you are agreeing to these restrictions.
Amblyseius Swirskii is a living creature and can be affected by any chemical pesticides used within the previous few weeks. As a general guide, refrain from using Pyrethrum or SB Plant Invigorator 2 days prior to use. Other chemicals insecticides can have long lasting residues that could harm swirskii and other predatory mites for much longer periods. Refrain from using these products or check with Dragonfli for information on the effect of these products on the predatory mites.