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Aculops lycopersici  (Tryon)

Bronze acariosis  


  • Tiny mite from the group of mites with only 2 pairs of legs. Its maximum size is barely 0.2 mm and it is invisible to the naked eye, especially since it is very slow. It is yellowish-orange in color and is distinguished from other mites by the elongated shape of its body (Figures 1 and 2). They can thus be confused with the hairs present on the tomato.
  • Species of global distribution.
  • Affects several plants of the Solanaceae family, but it does not cause damage especially on tomato and potato.
  • Observed in the open field as well as under shelter.


  • Susceptible botanical family(s)


  • Production areas affected :
Mayotte Reunion
Guadeloupe Martinique
Guyana New Caledonia
French Polynesia  


  • Organs attacked
Leaves flowers Fruits rods


Symptoms, damage

  • Symptoms :
    • Brown to bronze coloring of the leaves (figures 3 and 4), petioles and stems (figure 5) from which the name of this problem originates.
    • Flower abortion (Figure 6).
    • Leaf drying that can lead to the death of plants when the attack is not controlled (figure 7).
    • Corky areas more or less extensive, even cracked on fruits (figures 8 to 12).
  • Signs : mites not observable with the naked eye on the affected organs (figures ).
  • Possible confusion :



  • Development cycle: A. lycopersici shows 4 stages of development during its biological cycle (figure 13): egg, 2 larval stages, and adult.
  • The species persists on cultivated or uncultivated Solanaceae. The biological cycle lasts one week in tropical conditions and lengthens in cooler climates.
  • Dispersion : by the wind, animals and insects moving through the crop, but also workers and their tools during cultivation operations.
  • Favorable conditions : temperature close to 27°C and humidity of 30%, in other words hot and dry weather.



  • Rather difficult to control because this mite is often detected too late in crops by the first damage it causes (bronze colour).
  • Weed the crop and its surroundings.
  • Disinfect the greenhouses and the equipment used.
  • Control the sanitary quality of the plants before and during their introduction into the culture or shelter.
  • Produce the seedlings in a clean shelter . nurseries insect-proof are insufficient to prevent the entry of tan acariosis given their very small size and their mode of dissemination.
  • Consider  chemical protection, in particular if you use auxiliaries or biopesticides.
  • Attempt to eradicate the first outbreak(s) by eliminating the first affected plants and/or treating them locally and the surrounding plants.
  • Use a large volume of mixture and with enough pressure to reach the "heart" of the vegetation. The effectiveness of the treatments should be monitored over time.
  • Treat plants before uprooting in the presence of high pest populations.
  • Remove and destroy plant debris and crop residues.
Last change : 07/07/22
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