Tomato russet mites hide under sticky trichomes
Added on 08 February 2024
The tomato russet mite (Aculops lycopersici) causes tomato crop losses in many countries. Synthetic chemical pesticides against this pest are available, but they are harmful to the environment and have negative effects on natural enemies of pests. A promising alternative to chemical treatments is biological control with predatory mites. However, a challenge for biological control is the presence of trichomes on tomato leaves and stems. These tiny hairs produce sticky exudates to which many predatory mites become trapped and die. The tomato russet mite, due to its very small size, can remain under the trichomes.