Lailae Typhlodromalus lailae
Typhlodromalus lailae (Lailae) is a native Australian predatory mite naturally present in many mild, humid, coastal and hinterland districts. It is a highly effective biological control agent due to its voracious appetite for thrips, whiteflies and some eriophyid mites.
Description and life cycle
The predator is closely related to T. limonicus, an important predator used in Europe for thrips and whitefly control in greenhouse vegetables, berries, flowers and ornamental crops. At 25oC the lifecycle is approximately 6 days. Mated females produce about 40 eggs at a rate of about 2 per day with many living for up to 30 days when adequate prey is present. Optimum temperatures are 15-30oC, but T. lailae can continue breeding at 7-8oC, and can survive zero-degree temperatures. This makes it a good candidate for overwintering in outdoor crops. The mites do not like very hot/dry environments but will persist at higher temperatures if humidity levels are good. T. lailae is able to feed on first and second instar thrips, as well as whitefly eggs and nymphs.
T. lailae can be used effectively on crops including cucumbers, capsicums, avocadoes, blackberry, raspberry, rose and other ornamental plant crops.
When to release
Release preventatively prior to pest presence or at the first signs of thrip/whitefly activity. Lailae cannot be reared in high numbers like some other predatory mites. It is therefore necessary to release them early to allow them to breed and build up their numbers in the crop.
How to release
Predators are supplied in a medium of vermiculite and should be gently and evenly sprinkled over the foliage of the crops.
Whilst T. lailae is difficult to rear in high numbers, it will develop rapidly within crops with suitable environments and prey. Rates of release are lower than other predators but should be released preventatively at regular intervals. They are supplied at concentrations of 25,000/litre and should be applied at 5-20L/ha. Several weekly or fortnightly releases are suggested initially. For permanent crops once predators are established, a top up every 3-6 months is suggested.
T. lailae are sensitive to many pesticides, particularly pyrethroids, organophosphates and neonicotinoids. Residues on foliage and greenhouse structures may remain toxic for many weeks and negatively impact on their survival and ability to effect control. Check side-effects charts carefully and avoid using pesticides before and during T.Lailae use unless they are known to be safe. Contact Biological Services for specific information.
Ordering and accounts
Orders are sent via express courier services on Monday or Tuesday of each week, and usually arrive within a couple of days. Orders received after noon on Tuesday are sent the following Monday. Prices are on a sliding scale i.e. the more that is purchased over a monthly period, the lower the price will be per unit. Freight is charged at Express parcel cost. Accounts are sent at the end of each month, and can be paid by EFT, BPay, cheque or postal order.