, Volume 101, Issue 9, pp 759–763 | Cite as

An opilioacarid mite in Cretaceous Burmese amber

  • Jason A. Dunlop
  • Leopoldo Ferreira de Oliveira Bernardi
Short Communication


A fossil opilioacarid mite (Parasitiformes: Opilioacarida) in Burmese amber is described as ?Opilioacarus groehni sp. nov. This ca. 99 Ma record (Upper Cretaceous: Cenomanian) represents only the third fossil example of this putatively basal mite lineage, the others originating from Eocene Baltic amber (ca. 44–49 Ma). Our new record is not only the oldest record of Opilioacarida, but it is also one of the oldest examples of the entire Parasitiformes clade. The presence of Opilioacarida—potentially Opiloacarus—in the Cretaceous of SE Asia suggests that some modern genus groups were formerly more widely distributed across the northern hemisphere, raising questions about previously suggested Gondwanan origins for these mites.


Fossil Cenomanian Myanmar Acari Opilioacarida Biogeography 



We thank Carsten Gröhn for making this specimen available, Barbara Thaler-Knoflach for photographs of the living species, Ekaterina Sidorchuk for comments on Cretaceous mites, Paul Selden for discussions of biogeography, and the reviewers for valuable suggestions. LFOB acknowledges a CAPES/Brazil scholarship.

Supplementary material

114_2014_1212_MOESM1_ESM.docx (2.5 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 2,549 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jason A. Dunlop
    • 1
  • Leopoldo Ferreira de Oliveira Bernardi
    • 2
  1. 1.Museum für NaturkundeLeibniz Institute for Evolution and Biodiversity ScienceBerlinGermany
  2. 2.Setor de Ecologia/Departamento de BiologiaUniversidade Federal de Lavras, Campus UniversitárioLavrasBrazil

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