This paper reveals the hotspots of new mite discovery through of a survey of type localities of new Trombidiformes species described in two journals (Systematic & Applied Acarology and Zootaxa) during the last three years (2013-2015). Taxonomically, the 491 new species of the Trombidiformes are highly unevenly distributed among 55 families with top 10 families accounting for over 66% of the total. The Eriophyidae is the top-ranked family. Geographically, these 491 new species are from 55 countries around the world and their distribution among the countries is highly uneven. The majority of these new species (69%) are from the top 10 countries and six of the top ten countries are also megadiversity countries. The top three countries are all from Asia (Iran, China and Malaysia) and they together accounted for over one third of all new species of the Trombidiformes described in the two journals during 2013-2015.
Two new species of the family Eriophyidae (Acari: Eriophyoidea) from Mount Trusmadi, Malaysia, are described and illustrated. They are Neodicrothrix grandcaputus sp. nov. on Stachyurus himalaicus (Stachyuraceae) and Latitudo asiaticis sp. nov. on Psychotria asiatica (Rubiaceae). Both of the two new species are vagrant on the lower leaf surface. No damage to the host was observed. In addition to the description, a key to species of Neodicrothrix is provided.
Two new intertidal oribatid mite species from the Indo-pacific region are described. Indopacifica iohanna sp. n. was found on the coasts of the Philippines and can be distinguished from its congeners by the lack of a ventral tooth on the claws. The larva and nymphs of this species show the same type of plication and setation typical for juveniles of other selenoribatid mites. Indopacifica mauritiana sp. n. was discovered on the coast of Mauritius and can be separated from its congeners by possessing only vestigial lamellar setae. A morphometric comparison of these two species and Indopacifica pantai from Thailand and Malaysia showed a clear separation between the three species. The known distribution of the genus Indopacifica stretches now from Mauritius in the West to the Philippines in the East and further occurrences within this area should be expected.
The gamasine genus Berlesia Canestrini, 1884, is revived and further diagnosed, based on descriptions of adult females, males and nymphs of three new species (B. hospitabilis sp. nov., B. multisetosa sp. nov., B. vorontsovi sp. nov.) ectoparasitic on raspy crickets of three genera of Gryllacrididae (Ensifera) from Australia and the Philippines. A tight sister relationship of Berlesia with the monobasic genus Katydiseius Fain Lukoschus, 1983, known only from a pseudophylline katydid in Malaysia, is proposed. The subfamily Katydiseiinae Fain Lukoschus, 1983 (previously included in the family Otopheidomenidae in the superfamily Phytoseioidea) is redefined to include only those two genera, and moved to the dermanyssoid family Laelapidae, while its previously other monobasic genus, Eickwortius Zhang, 1995, is retained tentatively in the family Otopheidomenidae. Among other taxa relevant to Katydiseiinae reviewed here, Berlesia cultrigera Berlese, 1910a is transferred to the genus Orthopteroseius Mo, 1996, at present Otopheidomenidae, as Orthopteroseius cultrigerum (Berlese) comb. nov., and Berlesia nuda Berlese, 1910b is transferred to the genus Prasadiseius Wainstein, 1972, at present Otopheidomenidae, as Prasadiseius nudum (Berlese) comb. nov. A key to the two genera and five species recognized as belonging in Katydiseiinae is presented. Notable morphological traits of Berlesia, including only deutonymphs equipped with well-developed claws and males with dimorphically more elongated salivary stylets, are discussed. The one known life cycle of a species of Berlesia, B. hospitabilis sp. nov., includes protonymphipary, followed by a fully functioning deutonymph, and male copulation with pharate females-traits, rarely or not known among gamasine mite associates of invertebrates. The possible significance of elongate spermatodactyls and male reduced feeding are explored.
A short description of the tsutsugamushi disease is given, followed by a note on the conditions under which it occurs in Sumatra and the Malay States. Abandoned agricultural land which has grown up in weeds is particularly dangerous. Small rodents are the reservoirs of the virus which is carried from them to man by larval mites. Trombicula akamushi is the carrier in Japan, and T. deliensis in Sumatra. The disease has been conveyed to monkeys by inoculation and also by the bites of infected mites. A description is given of four mites which are commonly found in the ears of rats in the Malay States, and a method for the examination of the mites is described. Black rats, to the number of 130, were examined. Sixteen were trapped in an abandoned portion of an oil-palm estate where three Europeans became infected with the tsutsugamushi disease, and T. deliensis, the Sumatran carrier, was found on ten of them. Thirty rats were caught in other parts of the estate, and T. deliensis was found on nine. Thirty rats were caught in other rural districts, where the disease was not known, and T. deliensis was found on only one. Fifty-four rats caught in the town of Kuala Lumpur were examined, with the result that T. deliensis was found in none. The conclusion is reached that T. deliensis is probably the carrier in the Malay States, as it is in Sumatra.