Typhlodromus athiasae

Typhlodromus athiasae Porath and Swirski

Taxonomic placing: Acari, Mesostigmata, Phytoseiidae.

Common name: No common name.

Geographical distribution: Middle East, Greece and Libya.

Host plants: Many indigenous and introduced, annual and perennial plants.

Morphology: The reticulated dorsum is about 0.3 mm long, with 17 pairs of nude setae plus two pairs of lateral setae. All setae on the prodorsum subequal in length, the posterior setae longer. A single macroseta present on leg IV. The sternal plate with four pairs of setae, and there are four pairs of preanal setae.

Life history: Typhlodromus athiasae raised a generation in 11-12 days at 25°C and 70% RH and produced about 30 eggs in 20 days when feeding on the spider mite Tetranychus urticae. When the predator was offered the eriophyiid E. dioscoridis Soliman and Abou-Awad as prey, it produced about 60 eggs/female. The mite survives and lays eggs also on many other foods, like whiteflies and pollen. A single mating suffices for fertilizing all female eggs, but fecundity is reduced at higher or lower relative humidities, and when females, which can live for 3-4 months, become older. The larvae do not feed but other stages are cannibalistic, feeding on the young of other phytoseiids also. Typhlodromus athiasae has no winter diapause.

Economic importance: This mite is an important predator of the European red mite, Panonychus ulmi on apples, often greatly reducing pest populations. It is the dominant phytoseiid on citrus trees in the inner parts of Israel. The release of T. athiasae on citrus seedlings infested by the citrus red mite Panonychus citri in a greenhouse, at 1:10 predator:pest ratios, resulted in good pest control within one week in Turkey. The predator is also common in the Nile Delta region of Egypt, and in Syrian grapesvines.


Barbar, Z., Alkshki, S. and Aljamali, F. 2012. Record of Typhlodromus (Typhlodromus) athiasae Porath and Swirski in some vineyards of Homs governorate, Syria. Arab Journal of Plant Protection 30: 231-238.(in Arabic with an English abstract).

Basheer, A., Saker, I., Dahiah, H., and Mofleh, M. 2014. Life table parameters of Typhlodromus (Typhlodromus) athiasae Porath and Swirski (Gamasida: Phytoseiidae), predator of the two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae (Koch) (Actinedida: Tetranychidae). Egyptian Journal of Biological Pest Control 24: 373-377.

Momen, F.M. 2009. Life history of predatory mites Typhlodromus athiasae and Amblyseius cabonus (Acari: Phytoseiidae) on two pest mites as prey, with special reference to Eriophyes dioscoridis (Acari: Eriophyidae). Archives of Phytopathology and Plant Protection 42: 1088-1095.

Kasap, I. 2011. Biological control of the citrus red mite Panonychus citri by the predator mite Typhlodromus athiasae on two citrus cultivars under greenhouse conditions. BioControl 56:327–332.

Palevsky, E., Reuveny, H., Okonis, O. and Gerson, U. 1999. Comparative behavioural studies of larval and adult stages of the phytoseiids (Acari: Mesostigmata) Typhlodromus athiasae and Neoseiulus californicus. Experimental and Applied Acarology 23: 467–485.

Reuveny, H., Palevsky, E. and Gerson, U. 1996. Laboratory life history of the predaceous mite Typhlodromus athiasae. Systematic and Applied Acarology 1: 45-54.

Swirski, E. and Amitai, S. 1997. Annotated list of phytoseiid mites (Mesostigmata: Phytoseiidae) in Israel. Israel Journal of Entomology 31: 21-46.