Funky Mites and the Garden

They might look a little like aliens from a 1960s science fiction film, but soil mites are important, often overlooked and under-appreciated aspects of biodiversity. But the Royal Alberta Museum’s Dave Walter (Taxonomic Advisor / Acarologist) is out to change all of that.  In his position at RAM, Dave  has provided numerous resources on the subject such as the Almanac of Alberta Orbatida with his over 30 years of experience. Dave also lives and breathes this subject when he is not working at the RAM. In his spare time, Dave publishes a couple of blogs, namely:

The Home Bug Garden“, which is about naturalistic gardening and urban arthropod enjoyment and conservation. The post is a form of scientific outreach, mostly aimed at a general audience, knowledgeable gardeners, and undergraduate students:

Macromites Blog” is devoted to mites and other minute creepy crawlies, aimed primarily at graduate students and colleagues:

Here is a short excerpt from Macromites Blog:

A triple tribute to Funk: Funkotryplogynium

For no particular reason, other than it being a really good mite, I offer a view of a very dead juvenile collected in association with the infamous Funkotriplogynium iagobadius Seeman & Walter, 1997. Mites in the Antennophorina (Mesostigmata) are best known as associates of large arthropods, especially beetles and millipedes, but some live with ants, bees and termites, and others with cockroaches and earwigs living in stable habitats such as under rocks and in logs.”

Read the full article here and for more information contact Dave Walter.