An Eco-sustainable World
MitesSpecies Animal

Colomerus vitis

Colomerus vitis

The grape erineum mite or blister mite (Colomerus vitis Pagenstecher, 1857) is a mite belonging to the Eriophyidae family.

Systematic –
Eukaryota domain,
Kingdom Animalia,
Subkingdom Eumetazoa,
Phylum Arthropoda,
Subphylum Chelicerata,
Class Arachnida,
Superorder Acariformes,
Order Trombidiformes,
Suborder Prostigmata,
Superfamily Eriophyoidea,
Eriophyidae family,
Genus Colomerus,
Species E. vitis.
The term is basionym:
– Phytoptus vitis H.A. Pagenstecher, 1859.
The terms are synonymous:
– Eriophyes vitis (H.A.Pagenstecher, 1859);
– Eriophyes vitis (Landois, 1864);
– Phytoptus vitis Landois, 1864.

Geographic Distribution and Habitat –
Colomerus vitis is a mite that infects the leaves of the vine (Vitis vinifera). This mite has spread throughout the world and includes three distinct strains: a strain that curls leaves, a strain that causes blisters, and a strain that stops shoot growth.
This species is associated with the mite Tydeus eriophyes on vines near Grabouw, South Africa.

Morphology –
Colomerus vitis is a mite of microscopic size (0.15-0.2 mm), which contrasts with the red spider mites or “spiders” of the vine.
The adults are worm-like and have a very light yellowish white colour.
Its mouthparts are shaped like chelicerae and its body fused into a single mass (Idiosoma).
It only has 2 pairs of legs during its life cycle.
This mite belongs to the smallest living arthropods.
Currently only the gall gall race is present in France in all wine-growing areas, but it is not considered harmful. There are 2 other races in Europe, one which causes curling of the leaves, the other which attacks the buds. The latter breed is the only one that can have a significant quantitative impact on the harvest.

Aptitude and biological cycle –
Colomerus vitis is a mite that spends the winter in the adult stage, under the perulae of the basal buds or in the crevices of the bark, in the area where the shoots are inserted. At the beginning of spring it moves onto the young shoots causing the first damage on the newly emerged leaves (generally the first two or three leaves at the base of the shoot are affected). From the end of May it begins to migrate from the base to the apex of the shoot in search of young leaves on which to continue development and reproduce (up to 6-7 generations per year). From August to October-November the migration begins from the tips to the base of the shoots to reach the winter shelters.
It does not cause serious damage to the crop except in very rare cases.

Ecological Role –
Colomerus vitis is a mite that infects vine leaves (Vitis vinifera). It causes blisters on the leaves of the vine and this pathology is called erinosis.
The first damage sometimes appears already in spring on the young leaves, where convex blisters are created towards the upper surface which affect more or less extensive areas of the leaf but delimited by the veins; on the lower side, in correspondence with the bubbles, there is a hollow inside which there are hypertrophic hairs that form a dense tomentosity, initially light in color which then turns brownish as the drying progresses. This felted area, due to the pathological hypertrophy of the leaf hairs, offers shelter to the phytophagous until the biological cycle is completed.
The affected leaves reduce their photosynthetic capacity, causing nutritional difficulties for the plant which in severe cases have a negative impact on fruiting. In the case of heavy infestations, the shoots that present noticeable hypertrophy and deformations are also affected and it is also possible that their development may stop, with the emission of new shoots from the lateral buds. Even the bunches (in the early stages of development) can be affected, first developing deformations and dullness and subsequently drying out, causing the loss of entire bunches or parts of them.
To intervene on the populations of this mite, antioidal fungal treatments carried out with sulfur (especially if ventilated) can be exploited; these, acting in the gaseous state, have a collateral action against the Eriophids causing asphyxiation and are normally sufficient for their containment. It should also be remembered that Eriophids are well controlled by natural enemies, such as predatory mites of the Stigmeid family.
For this reason, treatments with synthetic products for other phytopathologies can alter the biocenoses of these organisms, causing negative repercussions on the entire acarofauna or entomofauna.

Guido Bissanti

– Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
– GBIF, the Global Biodiversity Information Facility.
– Laffi f., 1983. Mites of agricultural interest. Cooperativa Libraria Universitaria Editrice. Bologna.

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