Surveys of thrips and Tomato spotted wilt virus (TSWV) on weeds were conducted in the eastern Mediterranean region of Turkey during the years 2004-2006. Thrips species were collected by vigorously shaking weedy plants into a white container for 15 sec. Plant material collected during field surveys and plants which were used for mechanical inoculation of TSWV, were tested by DAS-ELISA. The weed species Ranunculus muricatus, Melilotus officinalis, Sinapis arvensis and Portulaca oleracea were used for the virus transmission experiments in an enclosed high plastic tunnel and in cage experiments. Western flower thrips, Frankliniella occidentlis (Pergande) (Thysanoptera: Thripidae), was the most common thrips, inhabiting 80 of the 82 weed species sampled. Adults of F. occidentalis and thrips larvae were significantly more abundant on S. arvensis than on the other weed species sampled (P < 0.05). Adult and larval thrips showed peak densities on most weeds in April or May. Summer annual weeds were not good hosts for reproduction of the thrips. A total of 90 samples from 17 plant species belonging to 11 plant families were ELISA positive for TSWV. No TSWV was detected on 65 weed species belonging to 26 plant families. High numbers of plant samples infected by TSWV were obtained in P. oleracea (21 samples) and in R. muricatus (15 samples). In field surveys symptoms of TSWV were detected on only R. muricatus. Incidence of the TSWV on weeds ranged between 5% and 25%. Transmission rates of TSWV by F. occidentalis to the weeds ranged from 33% to 83% in the pepper plastic tunnel and cage experiments.