Journal of Apicultural Science

Phoretic mites (Acarina) on earwigs, Forficula auricularia L. (Insecta, Dermaptera), found in apiaries

Journal of Apicultural Science. Volume 53, Issue 1, Pages 75-80, ISSN (Print) 1643-4439
Adult specimens of European earwig, Forficula auricularia collected from honeybee, Apis mellifera colonies with external mites were examined. Microscopic analyses of 211 earwigs showed that 81.5% of them were infested with mites. The following mites were recorded - phoretic hypopi of Anoetoidea (Histiostoma polypori, H. feroniarum) and several Acaroidea (Acarus farris, Rhizoglyphus echinopus, Caloglyphus berlesei). Some other unidentified mites, mainly belonging to the astigmadid, mesostigmatid and the trombiculid groups, were also recorded. The numbers of mites varied enormously and ranged from 1 to over 100 individuals per one earwig specimen. Mites were attached to particular surface regions of an insect's body. The most numerous hypopi colonies were observed on the front, end and lateral surfaces of the thorax. The abdomen of the earwig was settled mainly in the neighbourhood of the earwig thorax and near distal end of its abdomen (cerci). Hypopodes attached to earwig legs were sometimes observed. Hypopodes were also found attached to its head but this was rare. Smooth and unprotected body surfaces, distal body parts, especially mobile segments of legs (tarsi) and head (mouth parts, antennae), were usually without mites. The results of this study show a significant portion of earwigs transporting and spreading mites in the apiary environment, in which earwigs had penetrated.
Acarina, Acaridae, apiary, Apis mellifera, beehives, European earwig, Forficula auricularia, Histiostomatidae, honeybee, hypopus, mites, phoresy
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