Unusual, New Mite Discovered

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 10,180
    An Ohio State University graduate student recently discovered a new species of mite with unusual features that he affectionately named the “Buckeye Dragon Mite.”

    A graduate student at the

     

    University of Ohio discovered a creepy, crawly microscopic species.

     

     Yuck.  The species is a type of mite that the student affectionately

     

    nicknamed "The Buckeye Dragon Mite."  The mite kind of resembles

     

    the Chinese dragon that you see in New Year celebrations.  At just over

     

    a half a millimeter, the mite can't be seen by the naked eye.  The mite

     

    was found 20 inches below the surface on campus and had unusual

     

    straight hairs along its body not found in other known members of its

     

    family.  The mite also has interesting features on its mouth called rutella

     

    that function similar to teeth in other mites. The rutella supports a

     

    pouch­like vessel in the front of the mouth and it's believed that the

     

    pouch acts like a nutcracker, holding microorganisms in place while the

     

    internal pincers puncture them and suck up their fluid contents.