Russian biologists uncover new Acari genus

The acarian discovered in the Far East is associated with bark beetles.

Biological scientists from Tyumen State University (TyumSU) have discovered a new genus of Acari in the forests of Ussuri Krai which include several species known before, reported Andrey Tolsikov from TyumSU, the Chief of International Integrated Scientific Laboratory dealing with climate, land-tenure, and biodiversity.

"The acarian discovered in the Far East is associated with bark beetles, dangerous forest pests. The new acari genus, Coleopygmephorus, live with bark beetles in phoretic relations, implying that an acarus travels along bark by hanging on a beetle’s belly," Tolstikov said.

Scientists investigated Acari living on bark beetles in order to find out ecologically safe ways of pest control, as bark beetles accelerate the death of trees by gnawing numerous holes in wood. Among the Acari living near bark beetles and even traveling on them, one might identify some natural enemies which can be used as a biological tool for bark beetle control.

According to Tolstikov, following a recent expedition to the Far East, the scientists have managed to dig up a wealth of new material and find a great variety of new species. Now, the researchers are examining the results, systematizing and describing their findings.

First published by TASS.

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