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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Reno, Nevada » Great Basin Rangelands Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #342642

Research Project: Integrating Ecological Process Knowledge into Effective Management of Invasive Plants in Great Basin Rangelands

Location: Great Basin Rangelands Research

Title: Is body size important? Seasonal changes in morphology in two grass-feeding Abacarus mites

item LASKA, ALICJA - Adam Mickiewicz University
item Rector, Brian
item KUCZYNSKI, LECHOSLAW - Adam Mickiewicz University
item SKORACKA, ANNA - Adam Mickiewicz University

Submitted to: Experimental and Applied Acarology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/22/2017
Publication Date: 8/1/2017
Citation: Laska, A., Rector, B.G., Kuczynski, L., Skoracka, A. 2017. Is body size important? Seasonal changes in morphology in two grass-feeding Abacarus mites. Experimental and Applied Acarology. 72:317-328.

Interpretive Summary: Not applicable

Technical Abstract: Overwintering strategies in herbivorous mites (Acari: Eriophyoidea) are poorly understood. A study of two Abacarus spp., was conducted to compare body size parameters of adult females in different seasons. Mites of Abacarus n. sp. (under description) and A. lolli were sampled from Bromopsis inermis and Lolium perenne, respectively, in April, September and December of 2001 in Poznan, Poland; 21 morphological traits were measured for each specimen. A principal components analysis revealed significant differences in body size parameters for the different collection dates, with larger females collected in December in both species. Larger body size in winter is consistent with the hypothesis that mites of these species, for which deutogyny has not been observed, undergo physiological changes such as accumulation of nutritional reserves, that enable them to withstand adverse environmental conditions. Larger body size has also been shown in other invertebrates to reduce heat loss in cold conditions. Filling gaps in the current knowledge of eriophyoid overwintering strategies, whether in the presence or absence of deutogyny, will contribute to both basic and applied future studies of this important arthropod group.