Distributions of chaetodactylid mites (Acari: Chaetodactylidae), obligate associates of long-tongued bees of the families Apidae and Megachilidae, largely correspond to those of their hosts. Early derivative lineages of mites (Centriacarus gen. n. and Roubikia) are restricted to the endemic Neotropical apid bee genera Centris and Roubikia, respectively. Phylogenetically derived mite lineages are worldwide in distribution: Sennertia species are associated with carpenter bees (Ceratina and Xylocopa), and Chaetodactylus species are associated with nine megachilid and five apid bee genera. In contrast, mites of the genus Achaetodactylus are known exclusively from African Ceratina hosts. Reconstruction of the historical biogeography of the group, including the newly described early derivative genus Centriacarus, is conducted for the first time. Present distribution and host associations of chaetodactylids can be best explained by host shifts and intercontinental dispersals of phylogenetically basal groups. The Neotropical region is most likely to have been the ancestral area of this mite family. We describe six new early derivative taxa from the Neotropics, the center of origin and a biodiversity hotspot for chaetodactylids: Centriacarus turbator sp. n. (ex Centris vittata; Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Panama, Mexico); Centriacarus guahibo sp. n. (ex Centris sp.; Venezuela); Roubikia officiosa sp. n. (ex Tetrapedia maura; Mexico); Roubikia imberba sp. n. (ex Tetrapedia sp., and cleptoparasites Coelioxoides waltheriae and C. exulans; Argentina); Chaetodactylus melitomae sp. n. (ex Melitoma marginella, M. segmentaria; Mexico, Honduras); and Chaetodactylus lassulus sp. n. (ex Trichothurgus dubius, T. herbsti; Chile).
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Vol. 100 • No. 6