PESTS OF ONION

The onion thrips and the seedcorn maggot are practically the only onion pests in North Carolina. The onion maggot does occur here but poses a severe problem only in the northern states. Onion and seedcorn maggots cause the same type of damage and are virtually indistinguishable in the field.

KEY TO ONION PESTS

  1. Onion thrips - Foliage-rasping pest; pale yellow to dark brown body 2 mm or less in length; adult with 2 pairs of narrow, fringed wings (Fig. 154); causes silvery blotches or scratch-like markings on leaves; some infested leaves distorted, curling upward

  2. Seedcorn maggot - Bulb-feeding pest; white to yellow-white maggot up to 7 mm long; legless body with pointed head (Fig. 155); feeds underground in bulbs, causing plants to yellow and die.

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