Occurrence of a Mediterranean species in Central Europe and Asia, with notes on the generic status and biogeography of Simkinia and Hemileius (Acari: Oribatida)
2011 - Volume: 51 Issue: 3 pages: 359-370
The present paper deals with a species of oribatid mite, Hemileius humeralis Pérez-Iñigo jr., 1990, which was previously known from the Mediterranean region, and was recently found in the high mountains of Central Europe and Central Asia. The species is redescribed with detailed illustrations based on adults. Its ecology and geographical distribution places this species in varying habitats from high alpine meadow to lowland grassland in the western Palaearctic region. An extensive discussion on the taxonomic status of Simkinia and Hemileius is provided. Both taxa are treated here as subgenera of Scheloribates. Data on the biogeography of the members of these subgenera are discussed. It seems that the range and habitats of known species of Scheloribates (Simkinia) are in accordance with the concept of the Old Mediterranean Region. The majority of species of Scheloribates (Hemileius) show restricted distributions within one biogeographical region, mainly in the Palaearctic, Nearctic or Neotropical regions. The Mediterranean area is outstanding by a high species diversity.
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