more likely to be kleptoparasitic or neutral/beneficial rather than parasitic; probably feeds on pollen or fungi in the nest

Name and classification

Crossacarapis Ochoa and OConnor, 1996

Superorder Acariformes » Order Trombidiformes » Suborder Prostigmata » Infraorder Eleutherengona » Hyporder Heterostigmata » Family Tarsonemidae » Genus Crossacarapis

Type species
Crossacarapis eickworti Ochoa and OConnor, 1996


Female: Gnathosomal capsule not conspicuously beaklike (Figs. 2, 5). Cheliceral stylets short, not extending to gnathosoma anteriorly (Figs. 2, 5). Pharynx not conspicuously enlarged (Figs. 2, 5). Prodorsal shield extends hoodlike over gnathosoma (Figs. 1, 3). Prodorsal trichobothria present, capitate (Figs. 1, 3). Stigmata situated well posterolaterad of setae v1 (Figs. 1, 3). No hornlike protuberances associated with stigmata (Figs. 1, 3). Setae sc2 well posterior to stigmata (Figs. 1, 3). Dorsal idiosomal setae simple, slightly widened, short (Figs. 1, 4). Metapodosomal venter with 2 pairs of setae (3a and 3b) (3c and 4b absent) (Figs. 2, 6). Apodemes 4 not extending posterolaterally to bases of trochanters IV (Figs. 2, 6). Tegula short, not elongated (Figs. 2, 6). Ambulacrum I developed (Figs. 1, 3). Claw I present, not enlarged (Figs. 1, 3). Femur I with four setae, femur II with three setae (Figs. 2, 5).

Species identification

Only one species has been described in the genus Crossacarapis.



Bee hosts

Orchid bee, Euglossa sp.

Host association level


associated exclusively with bees or their close relative, wasps; cannot live without these hosts


some life stages are associated with bees, while others are not

Facultative or opportunistic

can complete entire life cycle without bees or their close relative, wasps

permanent (probably)

Host associations, feeding, and dispersal

  • All stages live in nests of orchid bees.
  • Female mites disperse on adult bees.


Based on cheliceral morphology these mites may be pollen feeders or fungivores in the nest, but they could possibly be parasitic on the larval instars of the bees. The short cheliceral stylets could conceivably pierce the thin cuticle of larval bees (Ochoa and OConnor, 1996).