Nov 012015

Here is another feather mite which was firstly named by Edouard Louis Trouessart in 1885. This is the first image of this species on Google image at the time being.

Trouessartia bifurcata (Trouessart, 1885) is a member of the Trouessartiidae family created by the same person (you would have never guessed…). This is today still considered as a valid species by Fauna Europea.


Here are microscopic photos taken from a microscopic mount of the MNHN, Paris. One long seta of the “tail” is unfortunatly broken, but this problem frequently occurs during the mount.

The inscriptions on the slide shows :

  • Name of species : Trouessartia bifurcata
  • Name of host : Acrocephalus paludicola (aquatic warbler)
  • Locality : France
  • Date of collection : unknown
  • Reference of slide : 42E4
  • Collection : Trouessart
  • Sex : male
  • Other reference : trt-38

Unfortunatly nothing about the mounting medium…

Trouessartia is a large genera which is parasiting primarily passeriforms. Acrocephalus paludicola is a Passeriform of the family of Acrocephalidae (aquatic warbler in English, phragmite aquatique in French). A taxonomic work has been done for the family of Trouessartiidae by Orwig (1968) and Santana (1976), I would very much appreciate to get this synthesis, if you have it !

For this species you would say directly bifurcata means the tail is bifurcated in this species, unfortunatly I fear that this caracteristic is shared with a number of other Trouessartia species…

Trouessartia bifurcata is not yet illustrated in this remarquable site on feather mite : Nevertheless, this site indicates other bird species which can host Trouessartia bifurcata :

  • Barred Warbler (Sylvia nisoria)
  • Garden Warbler (Sylvia borin)
  • Common Whitethroat (Sylvia communis)
  • Lesser Whitethroat (Sylvia curruca)

If you have examples of Trouessartiidae to share with us, do not hesitate to send them !

Our thanks go to MNHN Paris for granting a free access to the collection.


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