Etiology : Psoroptes cuniculi is a non-burrowing ear mite of rabbits. The life cycle is completed in about 21 days.
Incidence: The incidence of infection is uncommon in research animals.
Transmission: Transmission occurs by direct contact, although the mites can live off of the host for up to 21 days.
Distribution: Mites are distributed in the external ear canals. The mites may spread to the face, neck, and legs. There is one report of spread to the hindquarters.
Clinical Signs: Clinical signs include light to heavy brown crusts in the outer ear canal. Severe infestations may result in mild head-shaking, but mites do not invade the inner ear.
Diagnosis: Perform a direct examination of ear canal and microscopic examination of crusts or ear swabs to diagnose mite infection.
Ambulacral Suckers (Female): Leg pairs 1, 2, & 4
Arabulacral Suckers (Male): Leg pairs 1, 2, & 3
Bilobed Idiosoma: Present
Female Size: 400 x 750 µm
Male Size: 370 x 550 µm
Anal Slit Position: Terminal
Rear Leg Length: Rear legs project beyond the body margin