Poecilophysis sp., copyright Marco Salemi.

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

The Eupodoidea are a group of mostly soft-bodied mites including predatory, fungivorous and phytophagous forms. The predatory Penthalodidae differ from other eupodoids in being heavily sclerotised, and are often colourful and strongly ornamented. 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), hairy mites known only from Australia. Pilorhagidia and Pentapalpus unguempodius resemble Rhagidiidae in the possession of chelate chelicerae and are probably also predators (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.

    |--+--Eupodidae DW10
    |  `--Penthaleidae DW10
    `--Rhagidiidae DW10
         |--Foveacheles terricola (Koch 1835) Z01
         |--Evadorhagidia Z01
         |--Troglocheles gineti Z01, WL09
         |--Arhagidia J91
         |--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. recussa (Thor 1909) Z01
         |    |--P. spelaea (Wankel 1861) Z01
         |    `--P. weyerensis WL09
         |--Hammenia WHE88
         `--Rhagidia SB63

Eupodoidea incertae sedis:
  Paraprotacarus hirsti Dubinin 1962 AF00
  Palaeotydeus devonicus Dubinin 1962 AF00
  Pilorhagidia Strandtmann & Goff 1977 K90 [incl. Strandtmannia Zacharda 1978 K90; Strandtmanniidae WL09]
    |--P. celtarum WL09
    `--P. hirsuta WL09
  Eriorhynchus Qin & Halliday 1997 H98 [Eriorhynchidae WL09]
    |--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 WL09
    |--Turanopenthalodes polytrichus WL09
    |--Callipenthalodes pennyae WL09
    |--Penthalodes Murray 1877 SB63
    |    |--*P. ovalis (Dugès 1834) [=Megamerus ovalis] SB63
    |    `--P. ovasimilis Schweizer 1951 SB63
    `--Stereotydeus Berlese in Berlese & Leonardi 1901 H98 [incl. Tectopenthalodes Trägärdh 1907 W35]
         |--S. areolatus Womersley 1935 H98
         |--S. australicus Thor 1934 H98
         |--S. brevipalpus Qin 1994 H98
         |--S. capensis Womersley 1935 W35
         |--S. gamasoides Berlèe & Leonardi 1901 W35
         |--S. longipes WL09
         |--S. mollis WL09
         |--S. notaphalloides Berlèse & Leonardi 1901 W35
         |--S. occidentalis Womersley 1935 [=S. occidentale] H98
         |--S. pseudopulcher Qin 1994 H98
         |--S. rupicolamartimus Shiba 1976 S76
         |--S. shoupi S76
         |--S. tasmanicus Qin 1994 H98
         `--S. villosus (Trägärdh 1907) [=*Tectopenthalodes villosus] W35
  Pentapalpus [Pentapalpidae] WL09
    `--P. unguempodius WL09
  Linopenthaloides novaezealandicus WL09
  Cocceupodes Sig Thor 1934 SB63 [Cocceupodidae ZF11]
    |--*C. clavifrons (Canestrini 1886) [=Eupodes clavifrons] SB63
    |--C. communis WL09
    |--C. mollicellus Koch 1838 J91
    |--C. paradoxus M83
    `--C. pseudoclavifrons (Canestrini 1886) [=Eupodes pseudoclavifrons] SB63
  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.

[J91] Jesionowska, K. 1991. Morphology of the Eupodidae (Actinotrichida, Actinedida, Eupodoidea). In: Dusbábek, F., & V. Bukva (eds) Modern Acarology: Proceedings of the VIII International Congress of Acarology, held in České Budĕjovice, Czechoslovakia, 6–11 August 1990 vol. 2 pp. 265–278. SPB Academic Publishing: The Hague.

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

[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.

[S76] Shiba, M. 1976. Taxonomic investigation on free-living Prostigmata from the Malay Peninsula. Nature and Life in Southeast Asia 7: 83–229.

[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).

[W35] Womersley, H. 1935. On some Australian and South African species of Acarina of the genus Stereotydeus. [Penthalodidae]. Proceedings of the Linnean Society of New South Wales 60 (1–2): 79–82.

[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 Trombiformes 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: 24 February 2019.

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