Definition of thrips in English:


(also thrip)


  • A minute black winged insect which sucks plant sap and can be a serious pest of ornamental and food plants when present in large numbers. Thrips swarm on warm still summer days and cause irritation by crawling on the skin.

    Order Thysanoptera: many species, including the pea thrips (Kakothrips robustus), which can cause considerable losses to pea crops

    • ‘Insects such as ants, mealy bugs and thrips have been found in 37 out of 43 shipments, which then needed fumigation.’
    • ‘Here, we present the entire nucleotide sequence of the mt genome of the plague thrips, Thrips imaginis (Thysanoptera).’
    • ‘The most common insect pests of scallions are thrips, which arrive in mid-June and are a particular problem in dry weather, and occasionally cutworms or armyworms.’
    • ‘Terebrantia, the pest thrips, lay their eggs inside the plant's epidermis, the results of which can drive you mad trying to get rid of them.’
    • ‘Inspect your plants regularly for insects such as aphids, thrips, whiteflies, and other noxious pests, whether indoors or outdoors.’
    • ‘Stunted rose buds or flowers are usually a sign of thrips, a silvery insect that is almost too tiny to see.’


Late 18th century via Latin from Greek, literally ‘woodworm’.