Cold tolerance of the palm thrips, Thrips palmi Karny, was investigated to predict its survival in field during winter. Supercooling points of T. palmi were varied among the developmental stages and ranged from —26.4 to —18.4°C. However, the cold injuries occurred above supercooling points in terms of higher mortality. The exposure to subzero temperatures (—5° to —15°C) resulted in significant mortalities to all developmental stages of T. palmi. A preexposure to a low temperature (4°C) for 7 h significantly increased the cold tolerance of all stages of T. palmi with respect to survival at — 10°C and supercooling capacity. The rapid cold hardening (RCH) was dependent on the duration of the preexposure period at 4°C in adult stage. Polyol and sugar analysis using an high-performance liquid chromatography analysis showed that 4°C preexposure caused accumulation of glycerol, trehalose, mannitol, and mannose in the adults. The increase in trehalose levels was more significant than the others. This study suggests that all stages of T. palmi are able to become cold-hardy by RCH, in which several polyols and sugars may play crucial roles as cryoprotectants.
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Vol. 43 • No. 4