The bright red coloration make the Giant Red Velvet Mite easy to spot a red velvet mite, which is useful considering its diminutive size. The short hairs give it a velvety appearance. As a mite, it a member of the arachnid order and has eight legs. This mite also has a 'waist'. This species is usually found in the Southwest and Mexico though it has been spotted in states as far east as New Jersey.
They usually appear in large numbers after summer rains. Most of the year, however, they hibernate underground in silk-lined caverns. When active, they hunt for ants and termites as adults. As larvae, they eat the eggs of other insects and other small arthropods.
Category: Mite or Tick
Common name: Giant Red Velvet Mite
Scientific Name: Dinothrombium sp.
Adult Size (Length): 3mm to 17mm (0.12in to 0.67in) COMPARE
Identifying Colors: red
General Description: hairy, tiny, spider-like
North American Reach (Though Not Limited To*): Arizona; California; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kansas; Kentucky; Michigan; Minnesota; Missouri; Nevada; New Jersey; New Mexico; Mexico
* Keep in mind that insect reach is not governed by lines on a map and therefore may appear in areas/regions/states beyond those listed above.