The mites that feed on citrus, which belong to the families Tetranychidae, Tenuipalpidae and Eriophyidae, along with a single species in the Tarsonemidae, are listed and ranked according to their injury. All major citrus pests, except the Eriophyidae, are generalists. Analogously, there are only generalists, but no specialists, among the natural enemies that are known, or postulated, to control acarine citrus pests. This suggests that neither the major pest mites nor their natural enemies have evolved on citrus, and that generalist predators thus have a better chance to control the pests. As the introduction of generalist natural enemies is currently restricted by environmental concerns, and as this practice has not led to improved control of the acarine pests of citrus, it is argued that better use should be made of the indigenous predators of citrus mites.
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Vol. 8 • No. 1