No. 23 (30 Sept. 2009): 1-30
Accepted: 4 Aug. 2009
The effect of Macrocheles
muscaedomesticae and M.
subbadius (Acarina: Macrochelidae)
phoresy on the dispersal of Stomoxys
D. V. BERESFORD 1 & J. F.
Trent University Biology Department,
1600 West Bank Drive, Peterborough ON, Canada K9J 7B8.
1 Corresponding author. Phone: 705 652-7452; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
In south-central Ontario, the stable
flies disperse from their overwintering farms and re-establish populations at
neighbouring dairy and beef farms each
spring. Two species of phoretic macrochelid mites commonly found on stable
flies are Macrocheles muscaedomesticae and
We tested the hypothesis that mite phoresy affects
the dispersal of their stable fly phorionts. At a beef farm we found a higher
proportion of parous stable flies
with mite scars than expected, based on the proportion of nulliparous females
carrying mites. These results were
consistent with our hypothesis, indicating that stable flies without mites may
be emigrating more than flies carrying
mites. We further tested our hypothesis by comparing the mite load on
dispersing stable flies sampled with
a vehicle-mounted truck trap to the mite load on resident stable flies sampled
from three dairy farms and one beef
farm (May to October, 2001). Significantly, no stable flies caught in the
truck trap were carrying mites, compared
to the seasonal means of 10% and 5% of female and male stable flies with mites
at the four farms. This effect of
mite phoresy on stable fly populations is discussed.
mites, Stomoxys calcitrans,
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