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A Monograph on Plant Inhabiting Predatory Mites of India : Part II: Order: Mesostigmata

S K Gupta, Zoological Survey of India, 2003, pbk , [Memoirs of the Zoological Survey of India, Volume 20, Number 1], viii, 185 p, figs, ISBN : 818171010X, $28.00 (Includes free airmail shipping)

A Monograph on Plant Inhabiting Predatory Mites of India : Part II: Order: Mesostigmata/S.K. Gupta

From the General Introduction: Importance: "The plant inhabiting predatory mites under the Order Mesostigmata which have so far been recorded in India belong to four families, viz. Ascidae, Laelapidae, Otopheidomenidae and Phytoseiidae. Of these, the members of the family Phytoseiidae are most abundant, followed by Ascidae while the occurrence of the other two families on plants is rather scarce and accidental. Some of the phytoseiid species were found to be feeding upon phytophagous mites in the field and thereby could keep their population under check. In view of this importance, these mites have drawn attention of the acarologists and entomologists and work on diverse aspects have been undertaken specially with regard to the promising predatory species.

"In part-II of this monograph dealing with plant inhabiting predatory mites under Order Mesostigmata, 185 species, including 3 new ones, belonging to 4 families and 18 genera have been treated. For each species, synonymies, descriptions, illustrations, collection records, habitats, distributions and wherever known, the name of prey species upon which those have been recorded feeding in the field along with keys to genera, subgenera (where such categories have been recognised by this author) and species have been given.

"Since Gupta (1986) in his Fauna of India: Phytoseiidae, volume, had given detailed synonymies and description for 139 species known till then, only those synonymies which are important or those appeared subsequently and salient features of descriptions have been provided here, to avoid repetition.

"In part-I of this monograph, exhaustive historical review along with relevant references and keys to families of Mesostigmata inhabiting plants in India have been given and hence those have not been included in this part of the monograph.

"A chapter "Bio-ecology" has also been provided dealing with life cycle, seasonal occurrence, food preference, feeding potentiality, predator-prey interaction, effect of pesticides on predatory mites, mass culture etc. in respect of species for which such informations are available.

"Lastly, a state-wise list of mites giving distributions of all the 319 species of predatory mites so far known from India under Orders: Prostigmata, Astigmata, Cryptostigmata and Mesostigmata has also been appended.

"All the measurements given in the text are in microns.

"It is believed that this monograph providing a comprehensive account of the predatory mites of India will prove useful to the future workers not only in their identifications but also to know what is the present state of knowledge as regards predatory mites of India and what are the gaps needing bridging-up."

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