Leptus ariel (Erythraeidae), larva, dorsal view (modified from Southcott, 1989) title=
Fig. 1. Leptus ariel (Erythraeidae), larva, dorsal view (modified from Southcott, 1989). Click to enlarge

Bee Mites : Acari : Acariformes : Trombidiformes : Erythraeidae : Leptus

Leptus ariel Southcott, 1989

Leptus ariel Southcott, 1989: 124, Figs 3-5; Southcott, 1992: 29; Haitlinger, 1999: 156.
Leptus sp. Wilson et al., 1987: 853.

Apis mellifera Linnaeus, 1758 (Hymenoptera: Apidae) (type host)
Eumolpinae (Coleoptera: Chrysomelidae) (Haitlinger, 1999; Southcott, 1989).

Distribution. Guatemala (type locality); Peru (Haitlinger, 1999; Southcott, 1989).

Biology. Larvae were found attached to the hind femur, front head, and first metasomal tergite of the European honeybee Apis mellifera L. (Hymenoptera: Apidae). Since no adult mites were seen in the bee brood, it was assumed that mite propagation occurs outside the hive. The larval mites may have gained initial contact with the host while the bees were foraging on floral parts or while standing on moist soil investigating water. Observations within the hive did not reveal any obvious damage to the adult bees (Southcott, 1989; Wilson et al., 1987). Haltinger (1999) reported this species on a chrysomelid beetle in Peru.

Haitlinger, R. 1999(2000). Four new species of Leptus Latreille, 1796 (Acari, Prostigmata, Erythraeidae) from Peru. Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali Bollettino (Turin).17: 149-162.
Southcott, R. V. 1989. A larval mite (Acarina: Erythraeidae) parasitizing the European honey bee in Guatemala. Acarologia.30: 123-129.
Southcott, R. V. 1992. Revision of the larvae of Leptus Latreille (Acarina: Erythraeidae) of Europe and North America, with descriptions of post-larval instars. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society.105: 1-153.
Wilson, W. T., T. A. Wooley, R. A. Nunamaker & W. L. Rubink. 1987. An erythraeid mite externally parasitic on honey bees (Apis mellifera). American Bee Journal.127: 853-854.

Image Gallery
Leptus ariel (Erythraeidae), larva, dorsal view (modified from Southcott, 1989)
Leptus ariel



B. OConnor and P. Klimov ©
Created: April 27, 2012
Last modified: