Mites associated with bark beetles and their hyperphoretic ophiostomatoid fungi
The role that mites play in many ecosystems is often overlooked or ignored. Within bark beetle habitats, more than 100 mite species exist and they have important impacts on community dynamics, ecosystem processes, and biodiversity of bark beetle systems. Mites use bark beetles to access and disperse among beetle-infested trees and the associations may range from mutualistic to antagonistic, and from facultative to obligate. Many of these mites are mycetophagous, feeding on ophiostomatoid fungi found in beetle-infested trees and carried by bark beetles.