First record of Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Floch & Fauran, 1956) (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing the striped owl in Northeastern Brazil

Primeiro registro de Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Floch & Fauran, 1956) (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitando uma coruja-listrada no Nordeste do Brasil

Ricardo Bassini-Silva Fernando de Castro Jacinavicius Matheus Huang-Bastos Aksa Ingrid Vieira Batista Nathália Caroline Souza da Silva Thiago Ferreira Lopes Nery Josivania Soares Pereira Cal Welbourn Ron Ochoa Darci Moraes Barros-Battesti About the authors

Abstract

The chigger species Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Floch & Fauran) has been collected mainly from birds with a few records from reptiles and mammals. In Brazil, this species has been found on birds in the Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro states. Here, we report the first record of B. sinnamaryi parasitizing the striped owl, Pseudoscops clamator (Vieillot), in the Paraíba state, Brazil (northeastern region).

Keywords:
Chigger mites; ectoparasites; birds; Paraíba state; trombiculiasis

Resumo

A espécie de trombiculídeo, Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Floch & Fauran) tem sido coletada principalmente parasitando aves, com alguns registros em répteis e mamíferos. No Brasil, essa espécie foi encontrada em aves nos estados de Minas Gerais e Rio de Janeiro. No presente estudo, relatamos o primeiro registro de B. sinnamaryi parasitando a coruja-listrada, Pseudoscops clamator (Vieillot), no estado da Paraíba, Brasil (região Nordeste).

Palavras-chave:
Trombiculídeos; ectoparasitas; aves; Paraíba; trombiculíase

The Neotropical and Nearctic chigger species Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Floch and Fauran, 1956Floch H, Fauran P. Sur deux espèces du genre “Trombicula” (Acariens, Trombiculidés) nouvelles pour la faune de la Guyane Française: “Trombicula alfreddugesi” (Oudemans, 1910) et “Trombicula sinnamaryi” n. sp. Archs Inst Past Guy Ter 1956; 17(405): 1-7.) has historically been found parasitizing birds but also rarely parasitizing reptiles and mammals (Bassini-Silva et al., 2017Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Mendoza-Roldan JA, Daemon E, Barros-Battesti DM. Description of Blankaartia shatrovi n. sp. (Acari: Trombiculidae) from Brazil. J Med Entomol 2017; 54(1): 82-90. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149. PMid:28082634.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149...
, 2018Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Maturano R, Muñoz-Leal S, Ochoa R, Bauchan G, et al. Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing birds in southeastern Brazil, with notes on Rickettsia detection. Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2018; 27(3): 354-362. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057. PMid:30184002.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-29612018...
). Little is known about this widespread species that has been found in the following countries: Costa Rica (Arnold, 1970Arnold KA. Notes on Avian Ectoparasites from Costa Rica. I. Acarina and Diptera. Rev Biol Trop 1970; 16(2): 259-265.; Stekol'nikov et al., 2007Stekol’nikov AA, Literák I, Capek M, Havlćk M. Chigger mites (Acari: Trombiculidae) from wild birds in Costa Rica, with a description of three new species. Folia Parasitol (Praha) 2007; 54(1): 59-67. http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2007.008. PMid:17441438.
http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2007.008...
), Cuba (Daniel & Stekol'nikov, 2003Daniel M, Stekol’nikov AA. Chigger mites (Acari: Trombiculidae) new to the fauna of Cuba, with the description of two new species. Folia Parasitol (Praha) 2003; 50(2): 143-150. http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2003.025. PMid:14560976.
http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2003.025...
), French Guiana (Floch & Fauran, 1956Floch H, Fauran P. Sur deux espèces du genre “Trombicula” (Acariens, Trombiculidés) nouvelles pour la faune de la Guyane Française: “Trombicula alfreddugesi” (Oudemans, 1910) et “Trombicula sinnamaryi” n. sp. Archs Inst Past Guy Ter 1956; 17(405): 1-7.), Jamaica (Brennan, 1953Brennan JM. A note on the chiggers of Jamaica (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Parasitol 1953; 39(3): 292-295. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3273952. PMid:13053313.
http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3273952...
), Panama (Brennan & Yunker, 1966Brennan JM, Yunker CE. The chiggers of Panama (Acarina: Trombiculidae). In: Wenzel RL, Tipton VJ, editors. Ectoparasites of Panama. Chicago: Field Museum of Natural History; 1966. p. 221-266.), Peru (Brennan & Jones, 1961Brennan JM, Jones EK. Chiggers of Peru (Acarina: trombiculidae). Acarologia 1961; 3(2): 172-205.), Suriname (Brennan & van Bronswijk, 1975Brennan JM, van Bronswijk JEMH. Parasitic mites of Surinam XXI. New records of Surinam and certain French Guiana chiggers with the description of a new species of Loomisia Brennan & Reed, 1972 (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Med Entomol 1975; 12(2): 243-249. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jmedent/12.2.243. PMid:1159750.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jmedent/12.2.2...
), Trinidad & Tobago (Brennan & Jones, 1960Brennan JM, Jones EK. Chiggers of Trinidad, B.W.I. (Acarina: trombiculidae). Acarologia 1960; 2(4): 493-540.), USA (Brennan, 1965Brennan JM. Five new chiggers from Southwestern United States (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Parasitol 1965; 51(1): 108-113. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3275656. PMid:14259470.
http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3275656...
; Spalding et al., 1997Spalding MG, Wrenn WJ, Schwikert ST, Schmidt JA. Dermatitis in young Florida sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis pratensis) due to infestation by the chigger, Blankaartia sinnamaryi. J Parasitol 1997; 83(4): 768-771. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3284263. PMid:9267428.
http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3284263...
), and Venezuela (Brennan & Reed, 1975Brennan JM, Reed JT. A list of Venezuela chiggers, particularly of small mammalian hosts (Acarina: trombiculidae). Brigh Young Univ Sci Bull 1975; 20(1): 45-75.). Bassini-Silva et al. (2017Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Mendoza-Roldan JA, Daemon E, Barros-Battesti DM. Description of Blankaartia shatrovi n. sp. (Acari: Trombiculidae) from Brazil. J Med Entomol 2017; 54(1): 82-90. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149. PMid:28082634.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149...
, 2018Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Maturano R, Muñoz-Leal S, Ochoa R, Bauchan G, et al. Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing birds in southeastern Brazil, with notes on Rickettsia detection. Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2018; 27(3): 354-362. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057. PMid:30184002.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-29612018...
) recently discovered this species in Minas Gerais and Rio de Janeiro states (southeastern Brazil), parasitizing bird species in the Passeriformes and Piciformes orders. Here, we are reporting this species parasitizing the striped owl, Pseudoscops clamator (Vieillot, 1808) (Strigiformes: Strigidae) in Paraíba State, in the northeastern Brazil, for the first time. Also, we are providing notes on the trombiculiasis caused by this mite in its host.

A wild young male P. clamator was rescued alive in João Pessoa Municipality, Paraíba State (34° 50’ 0” W, 7° 5’ 0” S) by the State Environmental Police. The owl was sent to the Zoobotanic Park Arruda Câmara, João Pessoa municipality, Paraíba state for care due to a trauma wing and hind limb injury due to an electric shock. During the animal’s examination, saccular lesions with “red dots” inside were observed (Figure 1A) along the animal's flank and hind leg. Several more saccular lesions also on the flank were observed without red dots (Figure 1B). These lesions were accompanied by a small accumulation of what appeared to be connective tissue. The owl did not show any itching or any other clinical signs of ectoparasites.

Figure 1
Larvae of Blankaartia sinnamaryi attached to their host. (A) Close up of a larva parasitizing the host; (B) Saccular lesions on the owl’s flank and hind limb. The Black arrows are pointing out the injuries.

Soon after, the owl was euthanized and it was realized that the red dots were chiggers which were removed with the aid of tweezers and scalpel. Two larvae were recovered by veterinarians who stored them in 70% alcohol. The recovered larvae were sent to the Laboratório de Coleções Zoológicas (LCZ), Instituto Butantan, São Paulo State for identification. The material was slide-mounted in Hoyer’s medium according to Walter & Krantz (2009)Walter DE, Krantz GW. Collecting, rearing, and preparing specimens. In: Krantz GW, Walter DE, editors. A manual of acarology. 3rd ed. Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press; 2009. p. 83-96. and deposited in the Acari Collection of Butantan Institute (IBSP), under the accession number IBSP 16505.

The two larvae slide-mounted were identified as Blankaartia sinnamaryi using the published genera chigger key by Brennan & Goff (1977)Brennan JM, Goff ML. Keys to the genera of chiggers of the western hemisphere (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Parasitol 1977; 63(3): 554-566. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3280021. PMid:68115.
http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3280021...
. And, the species was confirmed by comparison with the material identified by Bassini-Silva et al. (2017Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Mendoza-Roldan JA, Daemon E, Barros-Battesti DM. Description of Blankaartia shatrovi n. sp. (Acari: Trombiculidae) from Brazil. J Med Entomol 2017; 54(1): 82-90. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149. PMid:28082634.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149...
, 2018Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Maturano R, Muñoz-Leal S, Ochoa R, Bauchan G, et al. Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing birds in southeastern Brazil, with notes on Rickettsia detection. Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2018; 27(3): 354-362. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057. PMid:30184002.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-29612018...
) deposited in the IBSP collection. The following characteristics identify this species: heart-shaped idiosoma; palptibia with nude dorsal and lateral setae plus a branched ventral seta; adoral setae branched; trifurcate odontus (Odo); pentagonal prodorsal sclerite; C row with 8 setae; D row with 6 setae; Ta I with ε positioned distal to ω, and only one mastiseta on Ta III (Bassini-Silva et al., 2017Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Mendoza-Roldan JA, Daemon E, Barros-Battesti DM. Description of Blankaartia shatrovi n. sp. (Acari: Trombiculidae) from Brazil. J Med Entomol 2017; 54(1): 82-90. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149. PMid:28082634.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149...
, 2018Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Maturano R, Muñoz-Leal S, Ochoa R, Bauchan G, et al. Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing birds in southeastern Brazil, with notes on Rickettsia detection. Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2018; 27(3): 354-362. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057. PMid:30184002.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-29612018...
).

This case report represents the third time B. sinnamaryi was collected parasitizing birds in the Order Strigiformes. Brennan & Yunker (1966)Brennan JM, Yunker CE. The chiggers of Panama (Acarina: Trombiculidae). In: Wenzel RL, Tipton VJ, editors. Ectoparasites of Panama. Chicago: Field Museum of Natural History; 1966. p. 221-266. reported this species parasitizing the Middle American screech owl, Megascops guatemalae (Sharpe 1875), and the mottled owl, Strix virgata (Cassin 1849). Pseudoscops clamator is designated a new host for B. sinnamaryi.

The lesions observed in this case were identical to those described by Bassini-Silva et al. (2018)Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Maturano R, Muñoz-Leal S, Ochoa R, Bauchan G, et al. Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing birds in southeastern Brazil, with notes on Rickettsia detection. Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2018; 27(3): 354-362. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057. PMid:30184002.
http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-29612018...
. These lesions are easy to detect because chigger larvae usually are red and deform the bite region. However, these chiggers are difficult to collect because in many cases the chiggers have already detached leaving only the host lesion.

In the present study, we highlight the species’ importance as a cause of trombiculiasis in its hosts. This case report is the first time that the species B. sinnamaryi is collected in northeastern Brazil. It also represents the first report of a chigger from Paraíba state.

Acknowledgements

To Gabrielle Ribeiro de Andrade and Maria Cristina Ferreira do Rosário for technical contribution, Debra Creel, Andrew Ulsamer (SEL-USDA), and Armando Rosario-Lebron (APHIS-USDA) for their help with references and technical support. To the Smithsonian Natural History Museum and National Agricultural Library (NAL-USDA), SEL-USDA for support and assistance with specimens and references. Mention of trade names or commercial products in this publication is solely for the purpose of providing specific information and does not imply recommendation or endorsement by the USDA; USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

  • How to cite: Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Huang-Bastos M, Batista AIV, Silva NCS, Nery TFL, et al. First record of Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Floch & Fauran, 1956) (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing the striped owl in Northeastern Brazil. Braz J Vet Parasitol 2021; 30(3): e003121. https://doi.org/10.1590/S1984-29612021042
  • Funding: This work was supported by the Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico under the Grant CNPq no. 377343/2015-3, 377342/2015-7, 440639/2015-8, 454907/2014-1, 377976/2014-8 (DMB-B) and CNPq no. 377976/2014-8 (FCJ); by the Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo under the Grant FAPESP no. 2010/51875-9 (DMB-B), 2019/19853-0 (FCJ), 2017/01416-7 and 2018/24667-8 (RB-S). This study was financed in part by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior - Brasil (CAPES) - Finance Code 001.

References

  • Arnold KA. Notes on Avian Ectoparasites from Costa Rica. I. Acarina and Diptera. Rev Biol Trop 1970; 16(2): 259-265.
  • Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Maturano R, Muñoz-Leal S, Ochoa R, Bauchan G, et al. Blankaartia sinnamaryi (Trombidiformes: Trombiculidae) parasitizing birds in southeastern Brazil, with notes on Rickettsia detection. Brazil. Rev Bras Parasitol Vet 2018; 27(3): 354-362. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057 PMid:30184002.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/s1984-296120180057
  • Bassini-Silva R, Jacinavicius FC, Mendoza-Roldan JA, Daemon E, Barros-Battesti DM. Description of Blankaartia shatrovi n. sp. (Acari: Trombiculidae) from Brazil. J Med Entomol 2017; 54(1): 82-90. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149 PMid:28082634.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjw149
  • Brennan JM, Goff ML. Keys to the genera of chiggers of the western hemisphere (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Parasitol 1977; 63(3): 554-566. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3280021 PMid:68115.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3280021
  • Brennan JM, Jones EK. Chiggers of Peru (Acarina: trombiculidae). Acarologia 1961; 3(2): 172-205.
  • Brennan JM, Jones EK. Chiggers of Trinidad, B.W.I. (Acarina: trombiculidae). Acarologia 1960; 2(4): 493-540.
  • Brennan JM, Reed JT. A list of Venezuela chiggers, particularly of small mammalian hosts (Acarina: trombiculidae). Brigh Young Univ Sci Bull 1975; 20(1): 45-75.
  • Brennan JM, van Bronswijk JEMH. Parasitic mites of Surinam XXI. New records of Surinam and certain French Guiana chiggers with the description of a new species of Loomisia Brennan & Reed, 1972 (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Med Entomol 1975; 12(2): 243-249. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jmedent/12.2.243 PMid:1159750.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jmedent/12.2.243
  • Brennan JM, Yunker CE. The chiggers of Panama (Acarina: Trombiculidae). In: Wenzel RL, Tipton VJ, editors. Ectoparasites of Panama Chicago: Field Museum of Natural History; 1966. p. 221-266.
  • Brennan JM. A note on the chiggers of Jamaica (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Parasitol 1953; 39(3): 292-295. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3273952 PMid:13053313.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3273952
  • Brennan JM. Five new chiggers from Southwestern United States (Acarina: trombiculidae). J Parasitol 1965; 51(1): 108-113. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3275656 PMid:14259470.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3275656
  • Daniel M, Stekol’nikov AA. Chigger mites (Acari: Trombiculidae) new to the fauna of Cuba, with the description of two new species. Folia Parasitol (Praha) 2003; 50(2): 143-150. http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2003.025 PMid:14560976.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2003.025
  • Floch H, Fauran P. Sur deux espèces du genre “Trombicula” (Acariens, Trombiculidés) nouvelles pour la faune de la Guyane Française: “Trombicula alfreddugesi” (Oudemans, 1910) et “Trombicula sinnamaryi” n. sp. Archs Inst Past Guy Ter 1956; 17(405): 1-7.
  • Spalding MG, Wrenn WJ, Schwikert ST, Schmidt JA. Dermatitis in young Florida sandhill cranes (Grus canadensis pratensis) due to infestation by the chigger, Blankaartia sinnamaryi. J Parasitol 1997; 83(4): 768-771. http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3284263 PMid:9267428.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/3284263
  • Stekol’nikov AA, Literák I, Capek M, Havlćk M. Chigger mites (Acari: Trombiculidae) from wild birds in Costa Rica, with a description of three new species. Folia Parasitol (Praha) 2007; 54(1): 59-67. http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2007.008 PMid:17441438.
    » http://dx.doi.org/10.14411/fp.2007.008
  • Walter DE, Krantz GW. Collecting, rearing, and preparing specimens. In: Krantz GW, Walter DE, editors. A manual of acarology 3rd ed. Lubbock: Texas Tech University Press; 2009. p. 83-96.

Publication Dates

  • Publication in this collection
    24 May 2021
  • Date of issue
    2021

History

  • Received
    02 Mar 2021
  • Accepted
    26 Mar 2021
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