Tetraleurodes perseae

Tetraleurodes perseae Nakahara

Taxonomic placing: Insecta, Hemimetabola,

Hemiptera, Sternorrhyncha, Aleyrodidae.

Common name: Red-banded whitefly.

Geographical distribution: Mesoamerica, Mexico, Florida, California, Lebanon and Israel.

Morphology: Adults are about 1.2 mm in length, wings whitish with 3 perpendicular, zigzagging red bands. Nymph brown, the shed molts being placed on their dorsum. The fourth stage (the so-called pupa) is black with a prominent whitish wax fringe.

Host plants: Avocado, Laurus nobilis L. and other Lauraceae.

Life history: A female produces 20-30 eggs placed on the on the undersides of immature avocado leaves and the development of a generation requires about 3-4 weeks. This whitefly lives for 1-2 weeks, and raises 7 annual generations in the Middle East (8-11 in lower Mexico). Its long- distance dispersal is due to the commercial shipments of infested avocado plants.

Economic damage: Tetraleurodes perseae is a minor pest of avocado. At times its numbers greatly increase and these whiteflies excrete copious amounts of honeydew colonized by sootymold. Feeding by large pest numbers deforms immature leaves, causes premature leaf drop, decreases crop vigor and affects production. This pest is not known to transmit any viruses.


Monitoring: The population trends of this pest can be followed by placing yellow sticky traps on avocado trees.

Biological control: The endoparasitoid Cales noacki Howard (Aphelinidae), attacks T. perseae, as does the coccinellid Clitostethus arcuatus. Both enemies often control the pest.


García-Palacios, D., Bautista-Martínez, N., Lagunes-Tejeda Á., Carrillo-Sánchez, J.L., Nieto-Ángel, D., and García-Gutiérrez, C. 2016. Population fluctuation and altitudinal distribution of Tetraleurodes perseae (Nakahara) (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) in Avocado (Lauraceae) in Morelos, Mexico. Journal of Insect Science 16: 102.

Hoddle S. M. 2006. Phenology, life tables, and reproductive biology of Tetraleurodes perseae (Hemiptera: Aleyrodidae) on California avocados. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 99: 553–559.

Rose, M. and Zolnerowich, G. 2004. Eretmocerus perseae n. sp. (Hymenoptera: Chalcidoidea: Aphelinidae) reared from Tetraleurodes perseae Nakahara (Homoptera: Aleyrodidae: Aleyrodinae) living on avocado in Mexico. Vedalia 11: 45–52.

Swirski, E., Wysoki, M. and Izhar, Y. 2002. Subtropical Fruits Pests in Israel, Fruit Board of Israel, 284 pp.