Jan 212016
 

Our today parasite has, as indicated by the species name, a quite circular appearance. Unfortunatly, I cannot show you a global view of this species. I am really sorry but it was to big for my lowest magnification objective !

Zonurobia circularis Lawrence 1935 belongs to the family of Pterygosomatidae and has been found on Platysaurus guttatus, the dwarf flat lizard. It can be found in Nord Transvaal in South Africa.

This is probable that the author of the prepared slide is Frank J. Radowsky (1929-2010), but I am not sure. Anyway this specimen and slide is now part of the French collection MNHN, Paris.

This prepared slide is really good and we can observe many details. I particularly appreciate the scale-like setae, which reminds me the scales of a butterfly. Have you ever observed butterfly scales in a microscope ?

Gnathosoma reminds me a tick, with hypostome and chelicerae, but it is far from an Ixodida !

 

I draw your attention on peritremal tubes araising on each side of the gnathosoma. I made specially two photographies of the gnathosoma, with two different focusses.

By the way, I recommend you the following publication which shows some very good drawings of this species :

PTERYGOSOMATIDAE : DESCRIPTIONS ET OBSERVATIONS SUR LES GENRES PTERYGOSOMA, GECKOBIA, ZONUROBIA ET HIRSTIELLA (ACARI : ACTINEDIDA) M. BERTRAND, I. PAPERNA et S. FINKELMAN

If you observe carefully the description and drawings which are made of Zonurobia circularis, you may notice that my photos are showing exactly the same configuration of articles and setae…

This publication, here above in reference, mentions that Lawrence has described 5 different types of Zonurobia circularis, and this species would probably require some deaper analysis linked with the type of hosts… Zonurobia is considered by Jack (1964) as near to Pterygosoma genera. One may wonder if some described species of Pterygosoma could not be in reality Zonurobia !

I propose you to compare both genera with the following post showing Pterygosoma transvaalense.

We are at you disposal to make such analysis if you can provide us some specimens of these nice parasites !

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Jan 072016
 

Synopsyllus estradei is a species of Siphonaptera from Pulicidae family, identified for the first time in Madagascar by professor J. M. Klein in 1964. The prepared slide is from MNHN, Paris collection.

This species was collected in a nest identified probably as a nest of Eliurus (rodent in the family of Nesomyidae).

 

At the time of discovery of this new species, it was the third species of Synopsyllus known :

  1. Synopsyllus fonquerniei (on Ratus ratus)
  2. Synopsyllus smiti (on Macrotarsomys ingens)
  3. Synopsyllus estradei (probable on Eliurus sp.)
  4. Synopsyllus robici (discovered after S. estradei)
  5. Synopsyllus girardi (discovered after S. estradei)

Publication of the description of the species available on the net :

UNE NOUVELLE ESPECE DE SYNOPSYLLUS (INSECTA, SIPHONAPTERA) DE LA FORET ORIENTALE DE MADAGASCAR, S. estradei par J. M. KLEIN (Bulletin de la Société de Pathologie exotique. Extrait du tome 57, no I, Janvier-Février 1964)

The genus Synopsyllus has been first described by Wagner and Roubaud, in 1932. It is characterised by :

  • Metasternum and metepisternum fully fused without vestigial suture (this is also the case for Synosternus Jordan, 1925),
  • Anterior occipital seta (not present in Synosternus),
  • Spermatheca has much bigger size than the one of Synosternus.

The spermatheca of Synopsyllus estradei is anyway quite different from the other species of Synopsyllus.

The new species was dedicated to Mr. Dr. F. ESTRADE Chief Director of Hygiene and Prevention  (SGHMP) and Director of the Institute of Social Hygiene of the Malagasy Republic.

You have on the following link a comparison with related genera Synosternus. I promise I will explain more in details in future, what means exactly fusion of metasternum and metepisternum, which could sound really esoteric for most of people !

I hope you will apppreciate the beauty of these photos ?

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Jan 012016
 

Hello world ! Mites and Parasites wish you a happy new year 2016 ! We wish you as few parasites as possible, unless for scientific studies… We wish you nice discoveries and wonderful photos of microworld !

As the new year is always an opportunity to take good resolutions, then I will suggest myself, for year 2016, to show you more oribatid mites… this is one of my weak points ! So to show you that I am working on my 2016 resolution, I show you, for the first post of this year, an oribatid mite extracted from the collection of MNHN, Paris !

Have you ever heard about ptychoïd oribatids ? Ptychoïdy is a mechanical defence in some groups of Oribatida, where the animals can retract their legs into the idiosoma and encapsulate. For this reason they are commonly called box mites. Our today subject is Euphthiracarus crassisetae, nearctic oribatid mite. This mite is belonging to the family of Euphthiracaridae.

 

Euphthiracarus polytretos is the name indicated on the prepared slide mounted by Professor Walker. It is a former synonym of Euphthiracarus crassisetae, according to World catalog of Oribatid mites from Subias. Subias is a real phenomenon for having performed such an exhaustive catalog of world oribatida. He has our full respect !

The inscriptions on the slide show :

  • Name of species : Euphthiracarus polytretos
  • Biotop : partly decayed coast, reduced stump, litter, humus, soil
  • Locality : Smith river Del Norte Co., California
  • Context : Fort Hays Studies
  • Reference of slide : 47D4
  • Mounting media : Euparol
  • Sex : male
  • Determinator : Walker
  • PARATYPE

In relations with this specimen, I found the following reference on the net : Walker, N.A. (1965): Euphthiracaroidea of California Sequoia Litter: with a reclassification of the families and genera of the world (Acarina: Oribatei). Fort Hays Studies, New series, Science series 3: 1-154.

As I am interested in etymology, I will stress the point that crassisetae means thick setae… One of these short and thick setae appear on the shown images.

On the enclosed photomicrographs you can notice :

  • Details of cuticle with smart little circles,
  • Detail of club-shaped sensilium,
  • Detail of gnathosoma, you can notice that the lateral part of gnathosomal capsule is not ornamented,
  • The shown chelicera is part of a second mout with dissected parts of Euphthiracarus crassisetae.

Once again we wish you a Happy New Year 2016 !

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