Histiostoma Blomquisti N. SP. (Acari: Histiostomatidae) A phoretic mite of the red imported ant, Solenopsis Invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae).

  • Authors: Wirth, Stefan; Moser, John
  • Publication Year: 2010
  • Publication Series: Scientific Journal (JRNL)
  • Source: Acarologia 50(3):357-371


The new species Histiostoma bJol1lquisti n. sp., associated with the Red Imported Fire Ant, Solenopsis invicta, is described by its deutonymph. A putative adult female is depicted. The deutonymphs only attach to female alates, dealates and queens of S. invicta. While queens may be covered by more than 200 deutonymphs over their entire bodies, the numbers of deutonymphs substantially differed between alates, dealates and queens, which are the preferred carriers, and the males and workers, which are usually not the phoretic hosts of these deutonymphs. It is assumed that the large amount of deutonymphs on queens may be a consequence of special conditions during nest foundings of monogyne colonies. Presence of deutonymphs apparently stimulates the cleaning behavior in workers; however deutonymphs are not removed during this procedure. This may be a consequence of chemical components produced in the opisthonotal glands of astigmatid mites that allow the mite to repel cleaning workers and remain strongly adhered to its carrier. It is unknown whether or not these mites affect the vitality of fire ant colonies.

  • Citation: Wirth, S.; Moser, John C. 2010 Histiostoma Blomquisti N. SP. (Acari: Histiostomatidae) A phoretic mite of the red imported ant, Solenopsis Invicta Buren (Hymenoptera: Formicidae). Acarologia 50(3):357-371.
  • Keywords: Solenopsis invicta; Red Imported Fire Ant; Histiostoma blomquisti n. sp., alates; dealates; queens; deutonymphs; cleaning behavior; opisthonotal glands; lateral oil glands; Histeostomatidae; Astigmata; allomones
  • Posted Date: September 30, 2010
  • Modified Date: November 4, 2010
  • Print Publications Are No Longer Available

    In an ongoing effort to be fiscally responsible, the Southern Research Station (SRS) will no longer produce and distribute hard copies of our publications. Many SRS publications are available at cost via the Government Printing Office (GPO). Electronic versions of publications may be downloaded, printed, and distributed.

    Publication Notes

    • This article was written and prepared by U.S. Government employees on official time, and is therefore in the public domain.
    • Our online publications are scanned and captured using Adobe Acrobat. During the capture process some typographical errors may occur. Please contact the SRS webmaster if you notice any errors which make this publication unusable.
    • To view this article, download the latest version of Adobe Acrobat Reader.