We describe the association between a new species of flower mite (tribe Melicharini) and Neotropical flower-visiting bats. Analogous to the well-known hummingbird–mite interactions, these mites appear to use bat visitors of the lowland tropical palm Calyptrogyne ghiesbreghtiana as a means of traveling to new inflorescences. Phenology data show tight coupling between the occurrence of mites on bats and flowering phenology of C. ghiesbreghtiana, suggesting that the palm is the most important host for the mites.
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Vol. 36 • No. 3