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ARS Home » Plains Area » Kerrville, Texas » Knipling-Bushland U.S. Livestock Insects Research Laboratory » LAPRU » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #321530

Research Project: Cattle Fever Tick Control and Eradication

Location: Livestock Arthropod Pests Research

Title: Challenges with the southern cattle fever tick in Puerto Rico: Then and now

item Perez De Leon, Adalberto - Beto
item SOLTERO, FRED - Animal And Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)
item Guerrero, Felicito
item OLIVER CANABAL, CARMEN - Puerto Rico Department Of Agriculture
item MESSENGER, MATTHEW - Animal And Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)
item HOLMAN, PATRICIA - Texas A&M University
item CASTRO ARELLANO, IVAN - Texas State University
item TEEL, PETE - Texas A&M Agrilife
item URDAZ, JOSE - Animal And Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)
item Miller, Robert

Submitted to: Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/2/2014
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Bovine babesiosis and anaplasmosis are deadly cattle diseases caused by microorganisms transmitted by the southern cattle fever tick (SCFT), Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus, which is considered the most economically important ectoparasite of livestock worldwide. Humans brought animals infested with the SCFT to Puerto Rico (PR). Eradication efforts were successful for some time, but the SCFT re-invaded PR. Tick infestations, morbidity and mortality due to bovine babesiosis and anaplasmosis are impacting the productivity of livestock and the profitability of producers. A partnership was established between industry, state, and federal organizations to conduct foundational research for an integrated SCFT control program. Five operations met project enrolment criteria. The initial phase of the study involved the establishment of baseline data relevant to the epidemiology of tick-borne diseases. The application of geographic information systems and remote sensing technologies is helping understand the pathogenic landscape for these tick and tick-borne disease systems, including the involvement of wildlife in SCFT dispersal, in and around livestock operations. An evaluation of products that could be ready for deployment in the field will be presented. Plans involve the combination of several technologies, including an anti-tick vaccine, to mitigate the impacts of SCFT on livestock. Expected outcomes include the implementation of management practices for the strategic use of products that mitigate the risk for acaricide resistance. Ultimately, animal agriculture in PR will have access to an integrated tick control program allowing producers to manage the SCFT in a sustainable manner.