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ARS Home » Plains Area » Kerrville, Texas » Knipling-Bushland U.S. Livestock Insects Research Laboratory » Livestock Arthropod Pest Research Unit » Research » Research Project #441380

Research Project: Management of Ticks of Veterinary Importance

Location: Livestock Arthropod Pest Research Unit

Project Number: 3094-32000-044-000-D
Project Type: In-House Appropriated

Start Date: Oct 1, 2021
End Date: Sep 30, 2024

Objective 1: Determine parameters such as tick range, movement and suitable habitats, to produce models of the risk of tick-borne disease outbreaks, and potential for introduction of invasive ticks in response to climate change and other perturbations. Objective 2: Develop methods to prevent, eradicate and control introduction of exotic ticks.

Ticks are a major threat to the livestock industry and human health. Other than cattle fever ticks, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus and R. annulatus, threats to livestock by high-consequence foreign pests are always present and one example of this is the recent discovery of the Asian longhorned tick, Haemaphysalis longicornis in seventeen states with an eastern boundary from Rhode Island south to North Carolina and a western boundary from Missouri south to Arkansas. There are other potentially invasive tick vectors (e.g., Amblyomma variegatum, Hyalomma spp., Rhipicephalus appendiculatus) and species that are expanding their ranges within the United States (e.g., A. americanum, A. maculatum, A. mixtum). Likewise, there are high-consequence foreign tick-borne pathogens, like African swine fever, that could devastate U.S. animal agriculture if their emergence involved transmission by native tick species. The research addresses the following research components in the 2019-2024 Veterinary, Medical, and Urban Entomology National Program (NP 104) Action Plan: Component 1: Veterinary Entomology, Problem Statement 1A Improved Integrated Pest Management of Ticks of Veterinary Importance and Component 2: Medical Entomology, Problem Statement 2D Improved Surveillance and Control of Ticks of Medical Importance. This research addresses ARS Performance Measure for Goal 4.3: Provide scientific information to protect animals, humans, and property from the negative effects of pests and infectious diseases. Develop and transfer tools to the agricultural community, commercial partners, and government agencies to control or eradicate domestic and exotic diseases and pests that affect animal and human health.