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Pests of Citrus :: Minor Pests:: Citrus rust mite


15. Citrus rust mite / Eriophyid mite: Phyllocoptruta oleivora (Eriophyidae: Acari)


Host-range and distribution           
This species has been reported as a serious pest of citrus in different parts of the world.


Damage symptoms

Fruits are attacked when they are of size of peas, damaged fruits become silvery, reddish brown or purplish black. Affected fruits bear a comparatively thicker skin and have rust spots, which render them unacceptable in the market. Feeding on grapefruit and lemons results in silvered or shark-skin appearance. In summer mites prefer fruits than the leaves. Fruits on the upper branches are more preferred than those on lower branches. Mites prefer lemon than other citrus species


Citrus rust mite is very small (150 - 165 m), fusiform, dorsally flattened and yellow. A female lays 20 to 30 eggs during a life span of 20 days. The eggs are smooth, spherical, semi-translucent and are laid in groups in indentations on fruits and on ventral surfaces of leaves. Egg period is 3 days and nymphal development is completed in 2-11 days. The life cycle is completed in 7 to 10 days in summer and 14 days in winter



  1. Irrigate judiciously, particularly during summer to prevent water stress conditions and resultant flare up.
  2. Spray monocrotophos 36 SL  1.5 L or dicofol 18.5 EC 1.0 L in water 1000 -1500 L /ha