Intensive egg production affects the welfare of confined laying hens, which increases the risk of epidemics. Ectoparasitic hematophagous mites and saprophagous feather mites cause low productivity and decreased egg quality. This study aimed to compare the biology of Cheyletus malaccensis (Oudemans) (Prostigmata: Cheyletidae) feeding on the prey Megninia ginglymura (Mégnin) (Astigmata: Analgidae) and Tyrophagus putrescentiae (Schrank) (Astigmata: Acaridae) in order to support the potential use of this predator in biological control strategies in the poultry industry. The study started with 30 eggs of C. malaccensis, isolated in experimental units, which developed into their different stages while feeding on the feather mite M. ginglymura and the stored product mite T. putrescentiae at 25±1°C, 80±5% relative humidity and 12-hour photoperiod. Immature stages were evaluated three times a day and the adult stage once a day. Adult females were unmated. Cheyletus malaccensis feeding on M. ginglymura resulted in a higher fertility rate, with 310.7±45.8 eggs/female, than with T. putrescentiae as prey, with 32.7±4.5 eggs/female. Furthermore, the oviposition period was higher feeding on M. ginglymura, 53.0±6.3 days, than on T. putrescentiae, 12.6±1.9 days. The net reproductive rate (Ro), the innate capacity for increase (rm), the mean generation time (T) and the finite rate of increase (λ) were higher for the generation fed on M. ginglymura. Cheyletus malaccensis is a likely natural enemy of M. ginglymura, and it is able to develop and reproduce while feeding exclusively on it.
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