Ácaros de pena (Acari: Astigmata) associados com aves em um fragmento de Mata Atlântica no Nordeste do Brasil
Alternative titleFeather mites (Acari, Astigmata) associated with birds in an Atlantic Forest fragment in Northeastern Brazil
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The present study reports associations between feather mites (Astigmata) and birds in an Atlantic Forest fragment in Rio Grande do Norte state, in Brazil. In the laboratory, mites were collected through visual examination of freshly killed birds. Overall, 172 individuals from 38 bird species were examined, between October 2011 and July 2012. The prevalence of feather mites was 80.8%, corresponding to 139 infested individuals distributed into 30 species and 15 families of hosts. Fifteen feather mite taxa could be identified to the species level, sixteen to the genus level and three to the subfamily level, distributed into the families Analgidae, Proctophyllodidae, Psoroptoididae, Pteronyssidae, Xolalgidae, Trouessartiidae, Falculiferidae and Gabuciniidae. Hitherto unknown associations between feather mites and birds were recorded for eleven taxa identified to the species level, and nine taxa were recorded for the first time in Brazil. The number of new geographic records, as well as the hitherto unknown mite-host associations, supports the high estimates of diversity for feather mites of Brazil and show the need for research to increase knowledge of plumicole mites in the Neotropical region.