Bondi Junction NSW, Australia
Fact Sheets
Taro bulb mite (391)
Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds
Pacific Pests, Pathogens and Weeds


  • Narrow distribution. In Oceania, Fiji, New Zealand, Niue, Samoa, Tonga. Recorded from coconuts, ginger, taro, yam.
  • Damage: not likely. Previously thought to be of economic importance because two near relatives injure bulbs, corms, tubers of e.g., onion, garlic, gladiolus, hyacinth, lilies, potato, carrot in storage, as well as attacking roots of onion, garlic and cereals in the field. They also allow entry of Fusarium.
  • Adult about 0.4 mm long, white with brown legs; lays several hundred eggs; nymphs with 6 legs, then several nymph stages when legs increase to four pairs and the mites become sexually mature.
  • Spread: attach to insects visiting the decaying storage organs; long distance in domestic and international trade.
  • Cultural and Chemical controls: Surveys in Australia and New Zealand failed to detect the mite, so although it has had the chance to establish, it had failed to do so. It appears, therefore, that there are no potentially adverse economic consequences from the importation of taro where this mite is present. Neither country considers Rhizoglyphus minutus a quarantine pest.

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