Mites of the family Scutacaridae have been found in termite nests and also phoretic on termites. In contrast to what has beenreported until now for scutacarid mites, the respective species did not possess claws on leg I for attachment on their host, butclasped to the termites’ coxae probably by using their large, pad-like empodia on legs II and III. This mode of attachment is a totallynew and unique discovery for Scutacaridae. The fact that the mites were present on non-winged termites, which are no suitabledispersal units, points to a yet undiscussed function of phoresy: apart from serving as long-distance transport between habitats, itmay also be an energy-saving way of movement within a habitat (in this example, the termite nest).
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Agrar- und Biowissenschaften (insg.)
Fields of Expertise
- Human- & Biotechnology
Treatment code (Nähere Zuordnung)
- Basic - Fundamental (Grundlagenforschung)