The Chilean false red mite is so called because it resembles spider mites but its body is much flatter. Brick-red in color with black dorsal spots, the adult female is about 0.8 mm in length. The B. chilensis is made up of mostly female individuals and produce offspring without fertilization. The eggs are red, ovoid and shiny. The short ambulatory appendages are very short; therefore it has low mobility. It is an important pest in vineyards, especially red wine cultivars, where it causes the death of shoots due to dehydration, tanning, wrinkling of leaves and dehydration of pedicels and rachis. This can translate into more than a 30% loss of production. It also affects some varieties of table grapes. It is mainly found in Chile.
Retarded plant growth
The larvae and nymphs feed on both the non-lignified bark and the foliage. During spring and the first part of the summer, the damage is concentrated in the foliage of the vine, being able to reach populations of up to more than a thousand individuals per leaf in red grapes. They are located on the underside of the leaf, on both sides of the vein, and later extend to the rest of the lower blade. In wine vines it produces russet and/or necrosis of the base of the shoots. It can cause death of shoots, wrinkling of leaves and dehydration of the rachis.
There are specific natural enemies for different species of mites.
For more information contact your local BioBee field agent.