Four genera are now placed in this family, Melanthrips and Ankothrips from the northern hemisphere, and Cranothrips and Dorythrips from the southern hemisphere. These genera include about 60 species, all flower-feeding, and almost all from outside the tropics.

In contrast to Aeolothripidae, the species of Melanthripidae resemble those of Merothripidae in retaining a pair of lobes on the posterior margin of the seventh abdominal sternite. These lobes are considered to represent the remnants of the eighth sternite of the ancestral Thysanoptera. The antennae of adult Melanthripidae are 9-segmented with all segments distinct from each other, almost moniliform. Segments III and IV bear rings of microtrichia and have the sensoria transverse but incomplete around the apex of these segments. Most of the species have long setae on the head and pronotum, but several species of Cranothrips in Australia have no long setae and thus look very different from typical members of the family (Mound & Marullo, 1998).

Melanthrips ficalbii

Cranothrips poultoni


Melanthrips fuscus