Entomological Science

Cover image for Vol. 19 Issue 1

Edited By: Masanori J. Toda

Impact Factor: 1.065

ISI Journal Citation Reports © Ranking: 2014: 39/92 (Entomology)

Online ISSN: 1479-8298

Interactions between Insects and Mites Virtual Issue

Interactions between Insects and Mites

Edited by Kimiko Okabe, Forestry & Forest Products Research Institute, Japan

Interactions between Insects and MitesEntomology, particularly Applied Entomology actually includes Acarology (study of mites), although most entomologists might not often learn much about mites. Mites maintain a diverse array of interactions with insects including: prey, predation on insect juveniles, symbiont, phoront (an organism mechanically conveyed by another organism), and possible competitors for food resources. Although herbivorous mites is the group that has been studied most, I suspect that competition for a food plant with certain insects has been overlooked, based on the body size of mites. Another well studied field is biological control. While parasitic mites have been studied as controlling insect pests including grasshoppers and scale insects, the ecological study of mite parasites in a wild insect population has rarely been conducted. Whether or not current biodiversity loss and population decline increases the parasitic load in a wild population is an important question to address.

Insects, in turn, generally represent threats for mites and may prey on them. Therefore, mites have developed counter measures against the predators: high fecundity and aggregation to avoid annihilation, hard outer skins, and so on. However, mite strategies against natural enemies are not yet well understood.

One of the most fascinating interactions of mites with insects is phoresy. Generally, mites exploiting patchy habitats use larger organisms, with their higher mobilization capacity, as a vector to take them to a new habitat. For instance, macrochelids have an interesting interaction with flies: the macrochelid mites feed on inmature flies including eggs, while they are phoretic on the adult. Because some of the species have been used as biological control agents of pest flies, domestic faunal surveys of certain groups of mites is important. Interestingly, a Sennertia mite is phoretic as well as nidicolous and was used to suggest the origin of its exotic host carpenter bee in Japan. Most microdispids are only known from females, living in soil and litter and are phoretic on insects associated with their habitats. However, their ecology is not well known. In order to live together with specific phoretic hosts, mites must develop adaptive strategies, such as well synchronized life cycles with those of their hosts to enable transfer on a newly emerged adult, bet-hedging either to leave or stay in a nest when a host leaves, and mutualism. There are many relationships between insects and mites that remain unstudied despite being ecologically and evolutionary interesting and economically important.

Species composition of thrips (Thysanoptera: Thripidae) and spider mites (Acari: Tetranychidae) on cultivated chrysanthemum (Asteraceae) in Okinawa, southwestern Japan

Tomoko Ganaha-Kikumura, Suguru Ohno, Keisuke Kijima, Masami Masumoto, Naomi Maekado

Correlates of parasite load in bumblebees in an Alpine habitat

Pius Korner, Paul Schmid-Hempel

Adults of European ant-like stone beetles (Coleoptera: Staphylinidae: Scydmaeninae) Scydmaenus tarsatus Müller & Kunze and Scydmaenus hellwigii (Herbst) prey on soft-bodied arthropods
Paweł Jałoszyński

New insect host records for mites of the family Microdispidae (Acari; Heterostigmatina), with description of a new species of the genus Paramicrodispus
Hamidreza Hajiqanbar, Vahid Rahiminejad, Yaghoub Fathipour

An alien Sennertia mite (Acari: Chaetodactylidae) associated with an introduced Oriental bamboo-nesting large carpenter bee (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Xylocopa) invading the central Honshu Island, Japan
Kazuhide Kawazoe, Kimiko Okabe, Atsushi Kawakita, Makoto Kato

Mites of the genus Holostaspella (Acari: Gamasida: Macrochelidae) in Indonesia
Sri Hartini, Gen Takaku

Mites of family Macrochelidae (Acari: Gamasida) associated with dung beetles in Mt Merapi National Park, Jogyakarta, Java, Indonesia
Sri Hartini, Dhian Dwibadra, Gen Takaku

Macrochelid mite fauna in the eastern part of the Lesser Sunda Islands, with description of two new species
Sri Hartini, Gen Takaku, Jun-Ichi Kojima, Haruo Katakura