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hitchhiker mites?

hitchhiker mites?
Mt. Ayr, Ringgold County, Iowa, USA
June 13, 2008
Can anyone tell me anything more about that which is attached to the underside of an
Onthophagus hecate, female (6+ mm)? Thank you.
Sweep net sample

Images of this individual: tag all
hitchhiker mites? Acari

Moved from Mites and Ticks.

Thank you
Thank you all.

phoretic mites
These are Deutonymphs of phoretic mites in the family Uropodidae. They secret a gluey substance from glands at their anus and stick out from the host. While they're on the beetle they are not eating, but only using the beetle to get to a new habitat where it will develop further. Nice pictures of the stalks

So, are they actually legless, or can we just not see them in the photo?

they have legs
the uropodids have little grooves that they can fit their legs into, so you just can't see them in the picture. They tuck everything in when they're hitching their rides.

Thanks for the ID Kaitlin, we need more mite experts around here.

MJ, these are parasitic mites, I think immature. Probably you'd need someone on the order of Barry O'Connor to ID these accurately.

If they're mites...
...the ones that attach themselves to their hosts by a pedicel are mesostigmatid nymphs (not parasites, but simply "hitchhikers"). I would have thought they would have visible legs at this level of magnification, but I have no experience with them. I certainly am unaware of any eggs that look like this.

I recommend moving the images here for your best chance of catching a mite specialist's attention.

Thank you all. I don't know a
Thank you all. I don't know anything about this form of attachment, or much about mites either.

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