These tiny creatures are flying, sap-sucking, plant-destroying pests. And they are in the new polytunnel with all the newly sown seeds. And they are multiplying. It could be a catastrophe and it’s most probably a major downside of hugel beds under cover. Time for biological warfare!!
Google tells me that thrips are more attracted to blue sticky traps than the more widely available yellow traps. I’ve ordered a bulk consignment from Dragonfli. I’ve also also ordered some predators (Amblyseius, pronounced: AM-BLI-SAY-US. I didn’t know!) Apparently these beasties arrive in sachets that are hung around the polytunnel; presumably the sachets have escape hatches or similar – we’ll see. These beasties, once free of the sachet, are also partial to red spider mite, which I think targeted the peach trees last year, so win-win. I’ll take down the sticky traps before deploying the predators, otherwise it’ll be similar to the charge of the Light Brigade.
I’ll keep you posted on thrip extermination progress. And there I was thinking gardening and growing was such a gentle pastime…
The war on bugs! It always surprises me how vicious I get when my plants are at risk!
My sympathies. Your last sentence had me smiling and shaking my head. xx
Even the word ‘thrips’ sounds evil. (Though maybe they all have loving personalities really – we’ll just never know.) (At least, I don’t imagine we will.)
Judging by the way they stay together (aka thunder fly) they probably are – but not in my polytunnel 😡
There is nothing gentle about my current gardening exploits 😓
I put the link to your post on Twitter and had an interesting response that I thought you might want to see…
Manfred R. Ulitzka @Thrips_iD 12h12 hours ago
@ladycatlover @wordpressdotcom No one mentioned the thrips, because these insects are not thrips but Diptera, possibly Simuliidae. 😜
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Thanks Maggie. It’s fair to say the picture was representative of the flying insect infestation I had in the polytunnel. Given the breeding habits of Simuliidae, I’d doubt it’s them, but whatever their name, the sticky traps are doing a marvellous job 😉
Saw your more recent photo of the sticky traps! Eeeek! Yuck! Glad they’re working for you. 🙂
I know nothing about insect pests other than cabbage whites ;). Always seems best to me to pass on anything that might be helpful.
At least the link to the other stuff started me thinking about what to do so I can actually get out in our garden later in the year… After several years of getting awful bites I only went out in back garden twice last year! Have decided to try something called Mosi-guard Natural Spray and see how I go with that. (please note I have no link to that company, but it sounds hopeful from online reviews)
Thanks for sharing – I now know more about black flies:) Hope the spray works for you, nothing worse than an itchy mosi bite.