Over the past two decades, two prominent thrips taxonomists (Laurence Mound in Australia, and Gerald Moritz in Germany), together with other international colleagues, have authored several thrips digital identification keys often including related molecular tools and other information. The first digital key, a CD product, for identifying thrips species likely to be intercepted by quarantine officials in Australia, was produced in 1998. This led to further keys, including “Pest Thrips of the World”, and a series of regional tools for use in North America, California, East Africa, the British Isles, China, and most recently, in Timor-Leste.
Early on, the keys were made available to users as CD-ROM products. Subsequently these keys have been updated and re-deployed as online keys and/or as Android/Apple smartphone apps. Over time, the authors have also added several features to provide additional information and training material for learning about thrips biology, classification, collecting, and microscope slide preparation. To enhance the tools for identifying thrips, photomicrographs and links to molecular techniques and data have been included. Brief details about these keys are provided below.
A brief history of the development and deployment of digital thrips keys (1998 – 2020)
Title of key
No. of taxa
AQIS Identification guide – Thysanoptera. Species most likely to be taken on plant material imported into Australia.
Moritz, GL. & Mound, LA. (1998)
CD-Version – No longer available.
Converted to Online version
Specimen preparation, Further reading, References
Thrips ID- Pest Thrips of the world
Mound, LA., Morris, D, Moritz, GL. (2001)
180 pest species, and all nine families
Pest Thrips of the World: An identification and information system using molecular and microscopic methods
Moritz G.L, Mound LA, Morris DC, Goldarazena A. (2004)
CD Version – English, German, Spanish
Sections covering Techniques, Tospovirus vectors, Glossary, Molecular key
Thrips of California (2008)
Hoddle MS, Mound LA, Paris DL (2008)
CD-Updated 2012 and July 2019
Pest Thrips of North America (2009) – associated with domestic and imported crops.
Moritz G, L, O´Donnell C., Parrella, M. Available online –
Techniques, Thrips morphology, Thrips and Tospovirus, Crop introductions
Pest Thrips of East Africa (2013)
Identification and information tools for pest thrips of East Africa (family and subfamily key)
Moritz G, Brandt S, Triapitsyn S, Subramanian S
Key introduction, Slide preparation, Thrips Biology, Thrips natural enemies (key), Glossary, Library
Thysanoptera Australiensis 2020
An identification and information system to thrips in Australia
Mound LA & Tree DJ (2020) Thysanoptera Australiensis – Thrips of Australia. Lucidcentral.org, Identic Pty Ltd, Queensland, Australia.
340 species in 5 Families of the Sub-Order Terebrantia
140 genera in sub-Families of the sub-Order Tubulifera.
Thrips of the British Isles (2020)
Laurence Mound, Dom Collins, Anne Hastings.
177 species of thrips taken alive on the British Isles at least once
Introduction to what is known of the biology and distribution of each species
Thripidae genera from China
Zhang, Shimeng; Mound, LA;
98 genera of the Thysanoptera family Thripidae
Prepared as part of Shimeng Zhang’s PhD degree Northwest A & F University, China
Pest thrips in Timor Leste (2019)
Mound LA (2019).
English; Bahasa Indonesia; Lingua Portuguesa
Aim is to identify pest thrips and distinguish them from the many thrips species likely to live in Timor Leste.