Mite (Acari) Communities Associated with 'Ohi'a, Metrosideros polymorpha (Myrtaceae), at Hono O Nal Pali and Kui'a Natural Area Reserves on Kaua'i Island, Hawaiian Islands

Swift, Sabina F.
Goff, M.L.
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University of Hawai’i Press
Native 'Ohi'a trees (Metrosideros polymorpha) were sampled for mites at two natural area reserves on Kaua'i Island, Kui'a and Hono O Na Pali. Ninety samples of leaves, flowers, bark, leaf litter, and soil under the 'Ohi'a canopies were taken. Mites were extracted with use of Berlese-Tullgren funnels. One hundred sixty-four species were found, with the suborder Prostigmata having the greatest number of species (74), followed by Mesostigmata (43), Oribatida (43), and Astigmata with the least (4). Leaf litter, leaf litter with soil, and bark have the most species, composed of predaceous mesostigmatic and prostigmatic mites, but a certain amount of overlap of mite species between the leaf litter and soil habitats was observed. The predominance of Collembola in the soil and litter samples indicates a stable food source for the predaceous mites, partly explaining the high number of mites in those habitats. Oribatid mites were collected from leaves, but the species composition differs from that on flowers and litter. Preliminary residency status of identified taxa shows 12% endemic, 17% adventive, and 71% of unknown status.
Swift SF, Goff ML. 2001. Mite (Acari) communities associated with 'Ohi'a, Metrosideros polymorpha (Myrtaceae), at Hono O Nal Pali and Kui'a natural area reserves on Kaua'i Island, Hawaiian Islands. Pac Sci 55(1): 23-40.
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