Larvae of Pentagonella acuscutellaris on back of great snipe Gallinago media, from Mąkol & Korniluk (2017).

Belongs within: Trombidiae.
Contains: Leptotrombidium, Eutrombicula, Guntheria, Trombicula, Neotrombicula.

The Trombiculidae are a family of predatory mites whose larvae, known as chiggers, are mostly ectoparasitic on vertebrates. Bites from chiggers induce formation of a characteristic feeding tube, the stylostome, and can cause intensely itchy lesions that may become infected. Adults, where known, are often predators of insect eggs (Walter et al. 2009). Trombiculids are divided between the subfamilies Trombiculinae and Gahrliepiinae. In larvae of Trombiculinae, the prodorsal scutum usually possesses an anteromedian seta and the basifemora and telofemora of the legs are usually distinct; in Gahrliepiinae, the scutum lacks an anteromedian setae and the basifemur and telofemur are fused in the mid and hind legs.

Characters (from Kethley 1990): Adults and nymphs with anterior margin of prodorsal sclerite with two, one or no setae; prodorsum with one pair of flagelliform trichobothria; pregenital tubercle absent; setae on palp genu more numerous or equal to those on palp femur; palp tibia with two distinct spines in tandem near large clawlike seta. Larvae with prodorsal sclerite with a single anteromedian seta (unpaired vi); anal sclerite absent; genu II with three branched setae.

    |--Gahrliepiinae WL09
    |    |--Elianella Vercammen-Grandjean 1956 S61
    |    `--Gahrliepia Oudemans 1912 H98 (see below for synonymy)
    |         |--G. disparunguis Oudemans 1929 (see below for synonymy) H98
    |         `--G. morobensis (Gunther 1939) [=Walchia morobensis] H98
    `--Trombiculinae WL09
         |--Novotrombicula Womersley & Kohls 1947 S61
         |--Babiangia Southcott 1954 S61
         |--Trombicula H98
         |--Heterotrombidium Verdun 1909 T35
         |--Doloisia Oudemans 1910 T35
         |--Hannemania Oudemans 1911 T35
         |--Schoengastiella Hirst 1915 T35
         |--Walchia Ewing 1932 T35
         |--Neotrombicula T35
         |--Schoengastia Ouddemans 1910 T36
         |    `--S. gutekunsti Goff 1981 H98
         |--Neoschoengastia Ewing 1929 T35
         |    |--N. americana (Hirst 1921) [=Schoengastia americana; incl. N. entomyza Womersley 1952] H98
         |    |--N. ewingi Wharton & Hardcastle 1946 H98
         |    |--N. posekanyi Wharton & Hardcastle 1946 (see below for synonymy) H98
         |    `--N. retrocincta Gunther 1939 H98
         `--Pentagonella Thor 1936 T36
              |--*P. ardeae (Trägårdh 1904) [=Trombidium ardeae] T36
              |--P. acuscutellaris (Walch 1922) [=Trombicula acuscutellaris] T36
              |--P. fahrenholzi (Oudemans 1910) [=Microtrombidium fahrenholzi] T36
              |--P. muris (Oudemans 1910) [=Microtrombidium muris] T36
              |--P. traegardhi (Oudemans 1910) [=Microtrombidium traegardhi] T36
              `--P. yorkei (Sambon 1928) [=Trombicula yorkei] T36

Trombiculidae incertae sedis:
  Ectonyx fusicornis Brennan 1960 QV01
  Parasecia gurneyi (Ewing 1937) QV01
  Pseudoschoengastia scitula Brennan & Jones 1959 QV01
  Euschoengastoides QV01
  Leptotrombidium H98
  Eutrombicula H98
  Beamerella autoascuta K06
  Hooperella vesperuginis K06
  Microtrombicula B91
    |--M. carmenae K06
    `--M. eltoni WL09
  Trombiculindus Radford 1948 S61
  Ascoschoengastia Ewing 1946 H98
    |--A. deficiens Lester 19845 H98
    |--A. incurva (Womersley 1952) [=Trombicula incurva, Eutrombicula incurva] H98
    |--A. indica (Hirst 1915) [=Schoengastia indica, Neoschoengastia indica] H98
    |--A. rattus (Womersley & Heaslip 1943) (see below for synonymy) H98
    |--A. rhabdomyia Lawrence 1951 S69
    `--A. setosa Goff 1979 H98
  Blankaartia Oudemans 1911 B91, S94
    `--B. acuscutellaris WL09
  Cheladonta B91
  Chiroptella Vercammen-Grandjean 1960 H98
    `--C. geikiensis Goff 1979 H98
  Diplectria B91
  Eltonella B91
  Heaslipia B91
  Helenicula Audy 1954 H98
    `--H. kohlsi (Philip & Woodward 1946) [=Neoschoengastia kohlsi, Schoengastia kohlsi] H98
  Laurentella B91
  Myotrombidium B91
  Neosomia B91
  Octasternala B91
  Paraschoengastia B91
  Rudnicula Vercammen-Grandjean 1964 H98
    `--R. barbarae (Domrow 1964) [=Trombicula barbarae] H98
  Sasatrombicula Vercammen-Grandjean 1960 H98
    `--S. alicola (Domrow 1961) [=Trombicula alicola, T. alicota (l. c.)] H98
  Toritrombicula B91
  Trombigastia Vercammen-Grandjean & Brennan 1957 H98
    `--T. alcithoe Domrow 1959 [=Riedlinia alcithoe, Trombigaster (l. c.) alcithoe] H98
  Walchiella B91
  Whartonia B91
  Dolichotrombicula pectinata Feider 1977 DC91
  Euschongastia WL09
    |--E. jonesi WL09
    `--E. rotundata S91
  Vatacarus Southcott 1957 WP99, S61
    `--V. ipoides WP99
  Womersia strandtmanni WP99
  Tragardhula nilotica (Trägårdh 1905) [=Trombidium niloticum] S94
  Austracarus Lawrence 1949 CH98
  Hirsutiella zachvatkini S91
  Guntheria H98
  Herpetacarus Vercammen-Grandjean 1960 H98
    `--H. bidentatus (Womersley 1952) [=Schoengastia bidentata] H98
  Myotrombicula Womersley & Heaslip 1943 H98
    `--M. vespertilionis Womersley & Heaslip 1943 H98
  Schoutedenichia Jadin & Vercammen-Grandjean 1954 H98
    |--S. emphyla (Domrow 1960) [=Guntherana emphyla] H98
    |--S. empusa Domrow 1984 H98
    `--S. mimema Donrow 1984 H98
  Vercammenia Audy & Nadchatram 1957 H98
    |--V. gloriosa Domrow 1969 H98
    `--V. zweifelorum Domrow et al. 1983 H98
  Whartonacarus Vercammen-Grandjean 1960 H98
    `--W. shiraii (Sasa et al. 1952) [=Trombicula shiraii] H98
  Hoffmaniella DPD16

Ascoschoengastia rattus (Womersley & Heaslip 1943) [=Neoschoengastia rattus, Ascoshoengastia (l. c.) rattus, Euschoengastia rattus, Schoengastia rattus] H98

Gahrliepia Oudemans 1912 H98 [incl. Typhlothrombium Oudemans 1910 non Berlese 1910 H98, Typhlotrombidium Oudemans 1928 O28]

Gahrliepia disparunguis
Oudemans 1929 [=Walchia disparunguis; incl. W. fulleri Vercammen-Grandjean 1971, Gahrliepia disparunguis fulleri] H98

Neoschoengastia posekanyi Wharton & Hardcastle 1946 [incl. N. rectangulare Womersley 1952, N. struthidia Womersley 1952] H98

*Type species of generic name indicated


[B91] Brown, W. A. 1991. Host parasite relationships and distribution of larval Trombiculidae of the Philippine islands. 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. 1 pp. 627–632. SPB Academic Publishing: The Hague.

[DPD16] Dabert, M., H. Proctor & J. Dabert. 2016. Higher-level molecular phylogeny of the water mites (Acariformes: Prostigmata: Parasitengonina: Hydrachnidiae). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 101: 75–90.

[DC91] Daniel, M., V. Černý, J. Štěrba & J. de la Cruz. 1991. Morphological study of adults of trombiculid mites from Cuban hot caves. 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. 261–263. SPB Academic Publishing: The Hague.

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

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

[K06] Kwiecinski, G. G. 2006. Phyllostomus discolor. Mammalian Species 801: 1–11.

[O28] Oudemans, A. C. 1928. Fauna Buruana. Acari. Treubia 7 (Suppl. 2): 37–100.

[QV01] Quintero, M. M. T., M. Vargas, B. S. Hernández, P García & N. J. Otero. 2001. Ectoparasitic mites on Heteromys gaumeri in the south of Yucatan, Mexico. 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. 583–585. CSIRO Publishing: Melbourne.

[S91] Shatrov, A. B. 1991. The alveolar salivary glands of the active phases of trombiculid mites (Trombiculidae). In: Schuster, R., & P. W. Murphy (eds) The Acari: Reproduction, development and life-history strategies pp. 377–378. Chapman & Hall: London.

[S61] Southcott, R. V. 1961. Studies on the systematics and biology of the Erythraeoidea (Acarina), with a critical revision of the genera and subfamilies. Australian Journal of Zoology 9: 367–610.

[S94] Southcott, R. V. 1994. Revision of the larvae of the Microtrombidiinae (Acarina, Microtrombidiidae), with notes on life histories. Zoologica 48 (2): 1–155.

[S69] Steyskal, G. C. 1969. The mistreatment of the Latin genitive case in forming names of parasites. Systematic Zoology 18 (3): 339–342.

[T35] Thor, S. 1935. Übersicht und Einteilung der Familie Trombidiidae W. E. Leach 1814 in Unterfamilien. Zoologischer Anzeiger 109 (5–6): 107–112.

[T36] Thor, S. 1936. Neue Gattungen in der Familie Trombidiidae W. E. Leach 1814. Zoologischer Anzeiger 114: 29–32.

[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).

Last updated: 22 March 2018.

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