How to recognize two-spotted spider mite

The color of two–spotted spider mites can differ according to the host plant, varying from orange, light yellow or light green to red, brown or almost black. Adult spider mites have two dark spots on their flanks. During heavy infestation numerous webs made from silky threads can be found on the plant. Females usually deposit eggs on the underside of the leaves in these webs. The first larval stage has three pairs of legs. Starting from the second larval stage, mites have four pairs of legs. Theseare called the protonymph stage (second stage) and deutonymphstage (third stage). The two dark spots on the body darken when the mites age. Females enter diapause during unsuitable conditions (short day length, low temperatures and food) shortage. Mites in diapause are colored red. 

Two-spotted spider mite damage and distribution

Two-spotted spider mites are usually found on the underside of leaves and on growth tips of plants. Feeding damage expresses itself as small light spots. Feeding damage inhibits plant growth en causes reduced yield. During heavy infestation the leaf will die. In addition, webs and feeding damage cause cosmetic damage in ornamentals. 

  • Life cycle two-spotted spider mite

    about 80 eggs per female
    6-8 generations per season
    at 20°C : egg to adult in 17 days
    at 30°C: egg to adult in 7 days
    no development at 12 °C

  • Two-spotted spider mite damage and distribution

    very polyphagous
    tomato, eggplant, cucumber, bean
    potted plants

  • Two-spotted spider mite close-up

  • Two-spotted spider mite