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      Catalogue of the free-living and arthropod-associated Laelapidae Canestrini (Acari: Mesostigmata), with revised generic concepts and a key to genera

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      Zootaxa
      Magnolia Press

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          Abstract

          The cosmopolitan mite family Laelapidae includes both free-living predatory species and species associated with arthropods, mammals or birds. This work presents a list of free-living and arthropod-associated species of laelapids, with corresponding taxonomic information and references. It includes 1088 species (in addition to three subspecies) assigned to 73 genera, 61 new combinations and two new synonymies at the generic level. Laelaps (Apolaelaps) Silvestri is raised to the generic level. Many of the species described before about 1950 are poorly characterised and cannot be classified with confidence at the family or generic level. Hence, ten genera, one subgenus, 121 species (ca. 70% of which were reported as Hypoaspis Canestrini or Laelaps (Hypoaspis) Canestrini) and one subspecies, are considered incertae sedis, because of their inadequate morphological characterisation in the literature. Some of these may not even belong to the Laelapidae or to the groups of interest for this publication. A total of 89 species, 30 genera, one subgenus, one tribe and one subfamily previously associated with genera treated in this catalogue are now placed in other families or, less commonly, in laelapid genera not considered here because they are considered essentially vertebrate parasites (taxa excluded). Twenty-six other species (one cited as a “variety”) are cited as nomina nuda. An illustrated key to the 73 genera included in the catalogue along with revised generic diagnoses are provided.  

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          Genetic and morphological variation of bee-parasitic Tropilaelaps mites (Acari: Laelapidae): new and re-defined species.

          Mites in the genus Tropilaelaps are parasites of social honeybees. Two species, Tropilaelaps clareae and T. koenigerum, have been recorded and their primary hosts are presumed to be the giant honeybees of Asia, Apis dorsata and A. laboriosa. The most common species, T. clareae, is also an economically important pest of the introduced Western honeybee (A. mellifera) throughout Asia and is considered an emerging threat to world apiculture. In the studies reported here, genetic (mtDNA CO-I and nuclear ITS1-5.8S-ITS2 gene sequence) and morphological variation and host associations were examined among Tropilaelaps isolates collected from A. dorsata, A. laboriosa and A. mellifera throughout Asia and neighbouring regions. The results clearly indicate that the genus contains at least four species. Tropilaelaps clareae, previously assumed to be ubiquitous in Asia, was found to be two species, and it is here redefined as encompassing haplotypes (mites with distinct mtDNA gene sequences) that parasitise native A. dorsata breviligula and introduced A. mellifera in the Philippines and also native A. d. binghami on Sulawesi Island in Indonesia. Tropilaelaps mercedesae n. sp., which until now has been mistaken for T. clareae, encompasses haplotypes that, together with haplotypes of T. koenigerum, parasitise native A. d. dorsata in mainland Asia and Indonesia (except Sulawesi Island). It also parasitises introduced A. mellifera in these and surrounding regions and, with another new species, T. thaii n. sp., also parasitises A. laboriosa in mountainous Himalayan regions. Methods are described for identifying each species. These studies help to clarify the emerging threat of Tropilaelaps to world apiculture and will necessitate a revision of quarantine protocols for countries that import and export honeybees.
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            Mesostigmatic mites of Britain and Ireland (Chelicerata: Acari-Parasitiformes): An introduction to their external morphology and classification

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              Standard methods for Tropilaelaps mites research

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                Author and article information

                Contributors
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                Journal
                Zootaxa
                Zootaxa
                Magnolia Press
                1175-5334
                1175-5326
                September 13 2022
                September 13 2022
                : 5184
                : 1
                : 1-509
                Article
                10.11646/zootaxa.5184.1.1
                37044815
                83fea12c-b780-4c76-abf8-7611cb17604e
                © 2022
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