of chigger mites Neotrombicula spp. (Acari:
Trombiculidae) exhibited Borrelia but no Anaplasma
infections: a field study including birds from the Czech Carpathians as
hosts of chiggers
Alexandr A. Stekolnikov, Oldrich Sychra, Lenka Dubska and Veronika
Experimental and Applied
Acarology, 44 (4): 307-314 (2008).
S U M M A R Y
Chigger mites were collected from 1,080 wild birds
of 37 species at Certak (Czech Republic), in the western Carpathian
Mountains, from 29 July to 24 September 2005. The prevalence of
infestation with chigger larvae was 7%. A total of 325 chigger
specimens from 10 bird species was identified and three chigger species
were found: Neotrombicula autumnalis, N.
carpathica, and N. inopinata, the latter
two species being reported on new hosts. Neotrombicula
carpathica is reported in the Czech Republic for the first
time. A total of 509 chigger larvae found on 79 host specimens were
examined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) for the presence of Borrelia
burgdorferi s.l. DNA (fragments of the rrf
(5S)—rrl (23S) intergenic spacer), and Anaplasma
phagocytophilum DNA (epank1 gene). A
fragment of specific Borrelia DNA was amplified
through PCR in one sample, and the PCR product was further analyzed by
reverse line blotting assay, whereby both genospecies of B.
garinii and B. valaisiana were proved.
This sample pooled five chigger larvae collected from one Sylvia
atricapilla on 11 August 2005. No A. phagocytophilum
DNA was amplified. We conclude that larvae of the genus Neotrombicula
can be infected with Borrelia genospecies
originated from their present or former hosts.