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Bemesia argentifolii

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Bemesia argentifolii

Silverleaf Whitefly
Silverleaf whitefly.jpg
Type: Insect
Binomial: Bemesia argentifolii
Family: Aleyrodidae
Order: Hemiptera
Metamorphosis: Simple

The silverleaf whitefly (Bemisia argentifolii, formerly referred to as sweetpotato whitefly-strain B Bemisia tabaci) is one of several whiteflies that are currently important agricultural pests. The silverleaf whitefly was first found in poinsettia crops in Florida in the mid-1980's. It was found to have moved on to tomatoes and other fruit and vegetable crops less than a year later. Within five years, the silverleaf whitefly had caused over $100 million in damage to the Texas and California agriculture industries.


The adult silverleaf whitefly is about 1 millimeter in length and pale yellow in color.

Symptoms and SignsEdit

In addition to inflicting typical whitefly-type damage on plants, this species can transmit plant viruses such as geminiviruses. The broad mite (Polyphagotarsonemus latus) also uses the whitefly as a dispersal mechanism by clinging to the legs of the fly and dropping off at another plant.[1]


Host plantsEdit


This particular pest has been shown to be a good candidate for biological pest control, as it has several natural enemies, including parasitic wasps such as Encarsia and Eretmocerus.