IPM Short: Minute pirate bug good predator in cotton

IPM Short: Minute pirate bug good predator in cotton

The minute pirate bug is one of the first beneficial insects to enter Arizona cotton annually. Nymphs and adults are voracious generalist predators which search out and stalk prey. The bugs aggregate in areas of high prey density, moving into cotton from alfalfa early in the cotton season to feed on thrips.  

Orius spp. (Anthocoridae family) are valuable natural enemies in cotton and abundant throughout the season.

There are two species in Arizona – Orius tristicolor and O. insidiosus, referred to as minute (pronounced my – noot’) pirate bugs (MPB).

Adult MPBs are tiny from 1/12-1/5 inch long. The insect stands out in the bottom of a sweep net

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