TAXONOMY

Cycadothrips albrechti Mound and Terry, 2001, Australia.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS

About 0.08 in (2 mm) lengthy, colour varies from golden yellow to mild brown. Forewings are broad, as in different family members, however third antennal phase bears two unusually inflated sensoria. Large males have pair of stout, thornlike setae close to tip of stomach; these setae scarcely developed in small males.

DISTRIBUTION

Central Australia, close to Alice Springs.

HABITAT

Breeds within the male cones of the cycad Macrozamia macdonnellii.

BEHAVIOR

Breeds in a very scorching and arid space, has solely been seen to fly late within the afternoon when the humidity rises. At that point, each ####es fly in swarms from the male cones on which they've fed and produced larvae, and every grownup carries about 20 pollen grains on its physique. Concurrently, a strong odor is given off by any mature feminine cone, and this attracts the flying thrips, and induces them to crawl inside with their pollen load.

FEEDING ECOLOGY AND DIET

Adults and larvae suck the contents from the pollen grains of M. macdonnellii; populations have been estimated at 50,000 adults in a single cone.

REPRODUCTIVE BIOLOGY

Variation in dimension of males and the highly effective setae close to the tip of their stomach suggests some type of male aggressive conduct in mating, however this has not been noticed. Larvae develop solely in male cones, and subsequently fall to the bottom to pupate across the base of the cycad.

CONSERVATION STATUS

Not listed by the IUCN. The solely identified pollinator of this species of cycad, a plant that grows solely in a restricted space of central Australia. In their mutual adaptation, the long run existence of each is threatened by human exercise.


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