Distribution and abundance of phoretic mites (Astigmata, Mesostigmata) on rhynchophorus ferrugineus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae)

Mohammad Ali Al-Deeb, Sabir Bin Muzaffar, Abdullah Mohamed Abuagla, Eyas Mohammad Sharif

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)


The red palm weevil, Rhynchophorus ferrugineus Olivier, is the most important insect pest on date palms. Weevils were collected from randomly selected infested date palms in Al Ain, United Arab Emirates (UAE). Mites from three families were recorded. Uroobovella sp. (Acari: Urodinychidae) were the most common phoretic mites. Curculanoetus sp. (Acari: Histiostomatidae) were second in abundance. Uropoda orbicularis (Acari: Uropodidae) was recorded on one beetle. The abundance of phoretic mites varied among body parts of R. ferrugineus, and the maximum numbers occurred in the subelytral space. The mean intensity, mean abundance, and prevalence of Uroobovella and Curculanoetus mites did not differ between male and female weevils. Uroobovella had significantly greater mean intensity, abundance and prevalence compared to Curculanoetus. Most Uroobovella and Curculanoetus aggregated under the sublytral space, which presumably offers protection from the hot and dry environment. This study is the first to document the presence of phoretic mites on R. ferrugineus in UAE and will help to direct future research on their interactions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)748-755
Number of pages8
JournalFlorida Entomologist
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2011


  • Curculanoetus
  • Red palm weevil
  • Rhynchophorus ferrugineus
  • Uroobovella
  • Uropoda orbicularis
  • phoresy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Insect Science


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