Submitted to: International Conference on Ticks and Tick-Borne Pathogens
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: November 10, 2002
Publication Date: December 9, 2002
Citation: Carroll, J.F., Allen, P.C., Hill, D.E., Pound, J., Miller, J., George, J. 2002. Control of ixodes scapularis and amblyomma americanum using the '4-poster' treatment device on deer in maryland. Experimental and Applied Acarology. 28:289-296. Interpretive Summary: The blacklegged tick is the principal vector of the pathogen causing Lyme disease, a serious human health problem in large areas of the U. S. Most adult blacklegged ticks feed on white-tailed deer. The `4-poster,¿ a device developed by ARS researchers at Kerrville, TX, that passively applies an insecticide to deer as they feed on corn bait, has shown promise in reducing populations of ticks that frequently use deer as hosts. These devices are being tested for their efficacy in controlling populations of blacklegged ticks in Maryland and four other states. After four years of treatment at three sites in Maryland, 69 - 80% control of host-seeking nymphs of the blacklegged tick has been achieved. Lone star tick populations at the Maryland study sites were reduced even further. These results are of interest to researchers investigating technologies to control blacklegged ticks, to the Department of Defense and to municipalities and associations wishing control tick populations.
Technical Abstract: Deer self-treatment devices (`4-posters¿) were evaluated for their efficacy in reducing populations of blacklegged ticks, Ixodes scapularis, and lone star ticks, Amblyomma americanum. At each of 3 locations in Maryland, 25 `4-posters¿ were operated in approximately 518 ha study areas. Populations of host-seeking ticks were monitored by flagging, both at the treatment areas and similar untreated control areas that lacked `4-posters.¿ From 1998 to 2002 the percent mortalities achieved were 69.0, 75.8 and 80.0 at the 3 sites infected with I. scapularis nymphs, and 99.5 and 95.3 for A. americanum nymphs at the 2 sites this species occurred.