Biological relationships of mites associated with insects
Our knowledge of Acarina is limited. Life histories have not been studied because it is difficult to rear these mites in the laboratory. Of the two-hundred or more identified mite larvae known in 1946, only twelve are known as nymphs or adults. However, this lack of knowledge in taxonomy does not appear to hinder the work on the biological relationships of mites associated with insects. Mites attacking members of the order, Orthoptera, were described by Lawrence (1940), Howard (1918), Hamilton (1914), Wehrle and Welch (1925), and Radford (1946). The mites attacked mainly the grasshoppers and locueta. These mites belonged to four families: Trombidiidae, Erythraeidae, Tarsonemidae, and Tyroglyphidae. Walsh (1868), Shimer (1868), Lignieres (1893), Riley (1873), and Ewing (1912) gave accounts of mites attacking the scale insect eggs and adults. These mites, which play an important part in the natural control of scale insects, include: Hemisarcoptes malus (Shimer), Monieziella entomophaga Laboulbene, Tydeus cocoophagus Ewing, Bdells cardinalis Banks, Cyta brevipalpa Ewing, Anystis agilis Banks, Eupalus sp., Tetranychus telariue Linne, and Oribata sp.. Of the mites which are parasitic on members of the order Hymenoptera, the most important one is Acarapis woodi (Rennie) which is the causative agent of the well-known Isle of Wight disease of honey bees. The mites infest the tracheal system of the bees and cause death due to the possible secretion of a toxic substance by the mite. White (1921), who reported on this acarine disease, experimented with healthy bees in an attempt to secure information on the mechanical effects of obstruction of the honey bee's tracheal system. The transmission of this disease was reported on by Burnside, Sturtevant, and Halst (1949). Other mites associated with hymenopterans were commensals. The Gamasid mites of the genus, Antennophorus, were described by Wheeler (1910) and Michael (1891, 1894). A certain biological specificity in the relationships with ants wes shown by these mites. One species of Gamasid mite usually was found with only one or two species of ants. LeVeque (1930, 1931) worked extensively on the mites belonging to the genus, Dinogamasus, Kramer. She described several new species of this genus and listed the different groups in whioh the species of Dinogamasus were placed. The groups listed were the perkinsi group, the alfkeni group, the ootoconus group, and the braunsi group. Descriptions of oommon features of the members of the groups and keys for distinguishing between the various species were also included. Marshall (1938), Shapiro, Saliternik, and Belferman (1944) reported the finding of larvae of bydrachnid mites as external parasites on adult mosquitoes. Other records of these water-mite larval parasites were made by Wolcott (1905) and Soar and Williamson (1925). The larvae of Hydrachna (Mulller) Latreille live parasitically on aquatic insects, larvae of Limnoohares Latreille live parasitically on water-bugs, larvae of Eylais Latreille are parasites on insects which leave the water and became aerial, and larvae of the family Hydryphantidae leave the water and live parasitically on aerial fnsects. Mites found on Buprestid beetles and Cerambycid beetles attack in particular in the ventral joints and sutures of the host insect. Lawrence (1940a) described a mite, Pysmephorus crassipes, which was found on the beetles. Anothe mite parasite of beetles, Uropoda vegetans de Geer, reported on by Riley (1877), developed an adaptive organ for attachment. The organ was an extensile organ which issued from the anal vent just beneath the extremity of the body and stuck to the beetle by means of a flattened disc. The mite parasite, Pediculoides ventricosus Newport, which attacks the grain moth, Sitotroga oereallela Oliv. is beneficial to man. It acts as a natural control for the destruction of the grain moth. More recently in 1948 mites of the genus Leptus were found parasitic on species of Corythucha. This discussion given on mite-insect relationship is not by any means complete, but it does point to the fact that investigations have been carried out and that there are great opportunities tor any researcher who may be interested in this field of study.
Thesis (M.A.)--Boston University, 1950