Poecilophysis sp., copyright Marco Salemi.

Belongs within: Prostigmata.
Contains: Penthalodidae, Cocceupodidae, Eupodidae, Penthaleidae, Rhagidia.

The Eupodoidea are a group of mostly soft-bodied mites including predatory, fungivorous and phytophagous forms. Members of the family Rhagidiidae produce silk that they use to protect themselves during moulting, and also in at least some cases in prey capture. They have strongly chelate chelicerae, and multiple solenidia on both the tibia and tarsus of the first pair of legs. Smaller families of the Eupodoidea include Eriorhynchus, large (up to 1.8 mm) mites known only from Australia. They are conspicuously hairy with a hypertrichous naso, six or seven setae on the palptibia (three or fewer in other families) and more than fifteen setae on the subcapitulum (typically two or four in other families). Pilorhagidia and Pentapalpus unguempodius resemble Rhagidiidae in the possession of chelate chelicerae and are probably also predators. Pentapalpus unguempodius possesses palpi with five free segments, claw-like empodia, and two solenidia on tarsus I whereas Pilorhagidia and Rhagidiidae have palpi with four free segments, pad-like empodia, and three or more solenidia on tarsus I (Walter et al. 2009).

See also: The Eupodoidea: earth mites and silk-weaving mites.

Characters (from Kethley 1990): Body usually weakly sclerotised (except in Penthalodidae). Rutellum absent. Palps with four segments; palpal tibia without a clawlike seta. Naso usually present; peritreme absent; one pair of prodorsal trichobothria present. Leg trichobothria absent. Tarsus I usually with at least one recumbent solenidion; famulus present on tarsus I, often stellate-shaped.

<==Eupodoidea [Eupodinae]
    |--+--Eupodidae DW10
    |  `--Penthaleidae DW10
    `--Rhagidiidae DW10
         |--Foveacheles Z01
         |    |--F. terricola (Koch 1835) Z01
         |    `--F. (Mediostella) willmanni NK94
         |--Evadorhagidia Z01
         |--Troglocheles gineti Z01, WL09
         |--Arhagidia monothrix NK94
         |--Shibaia heteropoda (Berlese 1910) (see below for synonymy) B96
         |--Krantzia quadriseta WL09
         |--Robustocheles WL09
         |    |--R. hilli Strandtmann 1971 E-VVM-M07
         |    `--R. mucronata WL09
         |--Tuberostoma WL09
         |    |--T. keithi WL09
         |    `--T. leechi WP99
         |--Coccorhagidia Z01
         |    |--C. clavifrons WL09
         |    |--C. pittardi Strandtmann 1971 Z01
         |    `--C. subterranea (Berlese 1905) [=Rhagidia subterranea; incl. Brevipalpia minima Zacharda 1980] B96
         |--Poecilophysis Z01
         |    |--P. (Dentocheles) pratensis NK94
         |    |--P. recussa (Thor 1909) Z01
         |    |--P. spelaea (Wankel 1861) Z01
         |    `--P. weyerensis WL09
         |--Hammenia WHE88
         |--Rhagidia SB63
         `--Lindquistula multisolenidiata NK94

Eupodoidea incertae sedis:
  Paraprotacarus hirsti Dubinin 1962 AF00
  Palaeotydeus devonicus Dubinin 1962 AF00
  Pilorhagidia Strandtmann & Goff 1977 K90 [incl. Strandtmannia Zacharda 1978 K90; Strandtmanniidae ZF11]
    |--P. celtarum WL09
    `--P. hirsuta WL09
  Eriorhynchus Qin & Halliday 1997 H98 [Eriorhynchidae ZF11]
    |--E. australicus (Womersley 1941) [=Penthalodes australicus] H98
    |--E. hades Qin & Halliday 1997 H98
    |--E. ramosus Qin & Halliday 1997 H98
    |--E. walteri Qin & Halliday 1997 H98
    `--E. womersleyi Qin & Halliday 1997 H98
  Penthalodidae ZF11
  Pentapalpus WL09 [Pentapalpidae ZF11]
    `--P. unguempodius WL09
  Cocceupodidae ZF11
  Dendrochaetidae ZF11

Shibaia heteropoda (Berlese 1910) [=Rhagidia heteropoda; incl. R. longisensilla Shiba 1969, *Shibaia longisensilla] B96

*Type species of generic name indicated


[AF00] André, H. M., & A. Fain. 2000. Phylogeny, ontogeny and adaptive radiation in the superfamily Tydeoidea (Acari: Actinedida), with a reappraisal of morphological characters. Zoological Journal of the Linnean Society 130: 405–448.

[B96] Baker, A. S. 1996. On the status of some species of Eupodoidea (Acariformes: Prostigmata) represented in the Berlese Acaroteca. In: Mitchell, R., D. J. Horn, G. R. Needham & W. C. Welbourn (eds) Acarology IX vol. 1. Proceedings pp. 373–375. Ohio Biological Survey: Columbus (Ohio).

[DW10] Dabert, M., W. Witalinski, A. Kazmierski, Z. Olszanowski & J. Dabert. 2010. Molecular phylogeny of acariform mites (Acari, Arachnida): strong conflict between phylogenetic signal and long-branch attraction artifacts. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 56 (1): 222–241.

[E-VVM-M07] Estrada-Venegas, E. G., I. M. Vázquez & J. A. Moreno-Moreno. 2007. Prostigmatid mites (Acarida: Prostigmata) in decaying wood from “La Mancha” Veracruz, Mexico. In: Morales-Malacara, J. B., V. M. Behan-Pelletier, E. Ueckermann, T. M. Pérez, E. G. Estrada-Venegas & M. Badii (eds) Acarology XI: Proceedings of the International Congress pp. 691–695. Instituto de Biología and Faculdad de Ciencias, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Sociedad Latinoamericana de Acarología: México.

[H98] Halliday, R. B. 1998. Mites of Australia: A checklist and bibliography. CSIRO Publishing: Collingwood.

[K90] Kethley, J. 1990. Acarina: Prostigmata (Actinedida). In: Dindal, D. L. (ed.) Soil Biology Guide pp. 667–756. John Wiley & Sones: New York.

[NK94] Norton, R. A., & J. B. Kethley. 1994. Ecdysial cleavage lines of acariform mites (Arachnida, Acari). Zoologica Scripta 23 (3): 175–191.

[SB63] Schweizer, J., & C. Bader. 1963. Die Landmilben der Schweiz (Mittelland, Jura und Alpen): Trombidiformes Reuter, mit 217 Arten und Unterarten und 193 Originalzeichnungen. Denkschriften der Schweizerischen Naturforschenden Gesellschaft [Mémoires de la Société Helvétique des Sciences Naturelles] 84 (2): i–vi, 209–378.

[WHE88] Walter, D. E., H. W. Hunt & E. T. Elliott. 1988. Guilds or functional groups? An analysis of predatory arthropods from a shortgrass steppe soil. Pedobiologia 31: 247–260.

[WL09] Walter, D. E., E. E. Lindquist, I. M. Smith, D. R. Cook & G. W. Krantz. 2009. Order Trombidiformes. In: Krantz, G. W., & D. E. Walter (eds) A Manual of Acarology 3rd ed. pp. 233–420. Texas Tech University Press.

[WP99] Walter, D. E., & H. C. Proctor. 1999. Mites: Ecology, Evolution and Behaviour. CABI Publishing: Wallingford (UK).

[Z01] Zacharda, M. 2001. Talus formations—remarkable biotopes for acarological research, with examples from the Rhagidiidae (Acari: Prostigmata). In: Halliday, R. B., D. E. Walter, H. C. Proctor, R. A. Norton & M. J. Colloff (eds) Acarology: Proceedings of the 10th International Congress pp. 269–271. CSIRO Publishing: Melbourne.

[ZF11] Zhang, Z.-Q., Q.-H. Fan, V. Pesic, H. Smit, A. V. Bochkov, A. A. Khaustov, A. Baker, A. Wohltmann, T. Wen, J. W. Amrine, P. Beron, J. Lin, G. Gabryś & R. Husband. 2011. Order Trombidiformes Reuter, 1909. In: Zhang, Z.-Q. (ed.) Animal biodiversity: an outline of higher-level classification and survey of taxonomic richness. Zootaxa 3148: 129–138.

Last updated: 21 July 2022.

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