Mite Life Cycle

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Introduction

Red Palm Mite Egg. E. Erbe unknown date, wikimedia commons
Mite larva of either family Trombidiidae or Erythraeidae. Pudding4brains 2008, wikimedia commons

The life cycle length of a mite varies between species, but is approximately 3 weeks on average. The Psoroptes mite has a lifecycle of 10 days, whereas the Demodex mite has a 21 day lifecycle.

Eggs

The female mite lays eggs on the host. The number of eggs varies between species.

Larvae

The mite's eggs hatch into hexapod larvae. Larvae often only feed on skin cells, not blood at this stage. In some mites the larval stage is the only parasitic stage of their life cycle, for example Trombicula autumnalis. This stage of the mite's life cycle usually lasts around 3-4 days.

Nymphs

The larvae remain dormant for 24 hours and moult into nymphs. There are two nymphal stages recognised. This stage in the mite's life cycle also lasts around 3-4 days.

Adults

Once nymphs have emerged from the larval stage, the nymphs moult finally into adult mites. These adult mites can be burrowing mites or surface mites depending on their species.


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References

Durden, Lance A. (2002). Medical and veterinary entomology (3rd ed.). Academic Press.




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