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Introduction

The Parasitiformes is one of thethree major lineages of chelicerate arthropods that are called mites.Ticks are among the most economically important parasitiform mites, butnumerous Mesostigmata, especially in the Dermanyssoidea are alsodebilitating parasites of mammals, birds, and reptiles. The phytoseiidmites used in biological control belong to the Mesostigmata, as do numerousspecies of predators that inhabit soil-litter systems. Currently, both theIxodida (ticks) and Holothyrida consist of three families; the Mesostigmatacontains approximately 70 family-level taxa.

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