MSPTM 2019 Annual Scientific Conference
13 - 14 March 2019
InterContinental Kuala Lumpur

Abstract

Title

MITES ASSOCIATED WITH DECOMPOSING RABBIT CARCASSES AT TWO DIFFERENT LOCALITIES IN MALAYSIA

Type
Oral Presentation
Theme
Scaling Up Efforts in Tropical Disease and Vector Control through Evidence-Based Research
Topic
Medical & Forensic Entomology

Authors

Main Author
Nurul Azmiera1
Presenting Author
Nurul Azmiera1
Co-Author
Mariana Ahamad2
Chin Heo3

Authors' Institution

Department / Institution / Country
Faculty of Medicine / Universti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) / Malaysia1
Unit of Acarology, Infectious Diseases Research Centre / Institute for Medical Research / Malaysia2
Institute for Pathology, Laboratory and Forensic Medicine (I-PPerForM) / Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM) / Malaysia3
Content
Abstract Content

Mites are known as agricultural pests and vectors of bacteria, viruses and fungi. In Malaysia, researches by local acarologists are directed towards the prevalence of mites on furs and feathers of animals, house dusts at homes and offices, and also in streams and lakes. However, mites may have potentials that are yet to be explored in various fields such as forensics. The objective of this research is to determine forensically important mites that are associated with decomposing rabbit carcasses. In this study, rabbit carcasses (n = 6) were placed at two different ecologies in Malaysia namely forest (i.e., Bukit Lagong Forest Reserve) and highland (i.e., MARDI Cameron Highlands). At each site, three carcasses were placed individually in an anti-scavenging cage until skeletonization stage. The soil samples beneath each rabbit carcass were collected using a shovel at the interval of three days after the initial placement towards a period of 40 days. The soil samples collected were processed using Berlese-Tullgren funnels for extraction of mites. The mean temperature and the total precipitation were recorded daily. At both Bukit Lagong and Cameron Highlands, Oribatid mites were higher in abundance at the beginning and at the end of the study while Mesostigmatids were higher in abundance from Day 13 to Day 40 post-mortem. For mites of the Order Astigmata, forest habitat showed a higher abundance on Day 16 and at the end of the fieldwork while in highland, they were higher at the end of the study. Mites could potentially serve as forensic markers whether as spatial or temporal indicators of carcass decomposition. Species identification of mites is on-going to enhance its usability in forensic investigations in Malaysia. 

Keywords: mites; forensic; soil; forest; highlands
Requires Audio or Video system for Presentation?: No