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Parasitic Arthropodology

Scanning electron micrograph of a mite
Scanning electron micrograph of a mite
Arthropods are the great triumphers of living beings, they are abundant in numbers and diversity, and so much so that they are very parasites and pests.

Mites are very small arachnids with eight legs, abundant and colonizers from all parts of the Earth. Some mites are very harmful, as they are parasites and pests of crops, in addition to causing allergies with their corpses and excrement. Among them are Sarcoptes scabiei is the  itch mite, a mite that digs tunnels in the skin causing intense itching, and ixodids or ticks, which feed on the blood of mammals.

In the world of arthropods, insects are the great triumphers, in quantity and diversity. Within the anuplura, lice and crab louses, they have importance for the human species, the head louse and the body louse, that belong to the species Pediculus humanus, but they are two distinct subspecies, and the crab louse (Pthirus pubis), that not only affect the pubic areas, but can also affect the hair, eyebrows and body hair.

Cimex lectularies, bed bug
Cimex lectularius, bed bug
Hemiptera are insects that suck blood or sap, some of them parasites or pests, although there are also beneficial, predators of other insects. This group belongs to Cimex lectularius, the bed bug, which has adapted to the human environment, feeding on blood in beds and sofas, usually with nocturnal habits. Although the transmission of diseases is not known, the itching is extremely annoying. In some houses and hotels are common, so they should be treated the rooms in which they are.

The genus Triatoma belong to blood-sucking insects that can transmit diseases, such as Chagas disease, caused by protozoa Trypanosoma cruzi.

Siphonapters are fleas, small insects without wings, which feed on the blood of mammals. Its body is small and resistant, can withstand the pressure of the human fingers in the scratching. They can transmit diseases. The flea of the rat caused the Black Death in medieval Europe, which killed 1 in 3 Europeans.

Diptera, an order of insects to which flies and mosquitoes belong, has numerous parasites and disease transmitters. One of its most terrible consequences in humans and livestock is myiasis, destruction of living tissue by infection and feeding of larvae.

Myiasis in a cat
Myiasis in a cat
Tabanidae, the horseflies, family belonging to Diptera. They have a strong sexual dimorphism, the males of the females are very different. Females sting mammals and birds and feed on blood. Some are transmitters of diseases like filaria Loa loa.

Muscidae is another family of Diptera, among which is the common fly, which is not chopping or hematophagous, but can transmit numerous diseases. Stomoxys calcitrans, the stable fly, mainly attacks cattle, but can also attack any warm-blooded species. In addition to the economic damages it causes, it is a vector of numerous diseases. The genus Glossina belongs to the tse-tse fly that transmits the soil disease or trypanosomiasis, caused by the protozoan Trypanosoma. Sarcophaga carnaria and Wohlfahrtia magnifica cause myiasis that affect mainly cattle, although they can affect the human species.

Culicidae is another family of Diptera, popularly known as mosquitoes. Females suck blood and can transmit disease. Among them is Anopheles, an endemic vector of malaria.

1. Arthropods. General Characteristics and Classification. Health importance of the arthropods

- Reading: Wikipedia. Arthropod
- Reading: D.J. Lewis. Arthropod Vectors of Public Health Importance (pdf)
- Presentation: Alexandra Fondren. Arthropods (prezi)
- Video: Smithsonian Education. What is an Arthropod?

2. Acari. Sarcoptes scabiei. Ixodidae

- Reading: Wikipedia. Acari
- Reading: Wikipedia. Sarcoptes scabiei
- Reading: Wikipedia. Tick
- Video: Icsp94. Scabies mite
- Video: Pet Health Network. Tick Lifecycle

3. Insects. Anoplura: Pediculus humanus and Pthirus pubis

- Reading: Wikipedia. Insect (Morphology and physiology, Reproduction and development, Senses and communication, Relationship to humans, etc.)
- Reading: Wikipedia. Head louse
- Reading: Wikipedia. Body louse
- Reading: Wikipedia. Crab louse
- Video: National Geographic. Secret Life of Head Lice
- Video: dranujsing123. Pthirus pubis [Crab louse or Pubic louse]

4. Hemiptera. Cimex lectularius. Triatoma. Siphonaptera

- Reading: Wikipedia. Hemiptera
- Reading: Wikipedia. Bed bug
- Reading: Wikipedia. Triatoma
- Reading: Wikipedia. Flea
- Reading: Wikipedia. Human flea
- Video: BBCWorldwide. A Bedbug's Bite - Up Close! - Bang Goes the Theory 
- Video: AnimalCareTV. Understanding Flea and Tick Control

5. Diptera. Tabanidae. Muscidae. Stomoxys calcitrans. Glossina. Calliphoridae. Sarcophagidae. Sarcophaga carnaria. Wohlfahrtia magnifica. Culicidae

- Reading: Wikipedia. Fly
- Reading: Wikipedia. Myasis
- Reading: Wikipedia. Horse-fly
- Reading: Wikipedia. Tabanus
- Reading: Wikipedia. Muscidae
- Reading: Wikipedia. Housefly
- Reading: Wikipedia. Stable fly
- Reading: Wikipedia. Tsetse fly
- Reading: Wikipedia. Calliphoridae
- Reading: Wikipedia. Flesh fly
- Reading: Wikipedia. Sarcophaga
- Reading: Wikipedia. Wohlfahrtia magnifica
- Reading: Wikipedia. Mosquito
- Video: Wildlife & Tribes. The most dangerous mosquitoes and Parasites Eating Us Alive 
- Video: Wellcome Library. The life cycle of the tsetse fly

Identification of arthropod parasites. Virtual Lab

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