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Phoretic deutonymph, dorsal

Phoretic deutonymph, dorsal
Albuquerque, Bernalillo County, New Mexico, USA
November 7, 2011
Size: 0.8 mm
Download high resolution image here.

I collected this attached to the ventral surface of a dead Onthophagus hecate (Scooped Scarab Beetle). I posted images of the beetle itself for identification purposes, and to show the overall investation:

These mites extrude a clear cement-like secretion in the form of a pedicel (stalk) with which they attach themselves to dung beetles for dispersal. The dorsal, ventral, and lateral views are of mites that I removed from the beetle and mounted on 3 mil tungsten wire with euparal. The image of the cluster of three mites was taken in situ on the beetle's abdomen to show how the pedicels attach. Note from the beetle's ventral view that there is a different sort of mite present (with big legs). I posted a separate group of images showing how it accidentally got stuck there. Identification(1) below family generally requires having an adult.

This image is from a CombineZP processed stack of 450 images with a 0.9 micron step taken with a Nikon LWD M Plan 20X 0.4NA microscope objective + extension + Nikon D300 camera.

Images of this individual: tag all
Phoretic deutonymph, dorsal Phoretic deutonymph with adhesive stalk, ventral Phoretic deutonymph, ventral closeup Phoretic deutonymph, lateral Phoretic deutonymphs, in situ cluster