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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 #355373

Research Project: Cattle Fever Tick Control and Eradication

Location: Livestock Arthropod Pests Research

Title: Integrated tick management: challenges and opportunities to mitigate tick-borne disease burden

Author
item Perez De Leon, Adalberto - US Department Of Agriculture (USDA)

Submitted to: Colombiana de Ciencias Pecuarias
Publication Type: Proceedings
Publication Acceptance Date: 10/16/2017
Publication Date: 12/1/2017
Citation: Perez De Leon, A.A. 2017. Integrated tick management: challenges and opportunities to mitigate tick-borne disease burden. Colombiana de Ciencias Pecuarias. 30(Supl):280-285.

Interpretive Summary: The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is the chief scientific in-house research agency of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). ARS finds solutions through research to agricultural problems that affect Americans every day from field to table. Animal production and protection programs of the ARS involve strategic research done at laboratories across the USA to prevent and control pests and animal diseases, including tick and tick-borne diseases (TTBD), that pose a threat to agriculture, public health, and the wellbeing of American citizens. TTBD burden the health of human, livestock, and wildlife populations around the world. Safer and more environmentally friendly technologies are required to manage TTBD. Hypothesis-driven research is advancing scientific knowledge, which can be translated to discover and develop new TTBD control methods. Advancing tests to demonstrate the benefit of using different technologies together will help document that integrated tick management is a more efficient way to reduce the negative effects of TTBD than relying on the application of one technology like the use of chemicals. Here, we summarize recent collaborative research by the USDA-ARS on integrated tick control and eradication. Our research efforts in Puerto Rico on integrated control of cattle fever ticks (CFT) exemplify the benefits of adapting the management strategy to deal with invasive tick disease vectors and associated TBD such as bovine babesiosis and anaplasmosis as is the case with CFT. We are adapting the concept of precision agriculture to our research conducted in partnership with wildlife biologists and others to understand aspects of the livestock-wildlife interface as a way to prevent the spread of CFT across the landscape. This research offers the opportunity to further assess tick-host-landscape interactions and provides the means to assess the efficacy of integrated approaches that could be adopted by the Cattle Fever Tick Eradication Program in the US to keep the national cattle herd CFT-free. Research by the Veterinary Pest Genomics Center of the USDA-ARS is allowing the translation of scientific knowledge into safe anti-tick vaccines that can be integrated to enhance the management of TTBD.

Technical Abstract: As the chief scientific in-house research agency of the USDA, the ARS finds solutions through research to agricultural problems that affect Americans every day from field to table. Animal production and protection programs of the ARS involve strategic research done at laboratories across the USA to prevent and control pests and animal diseases, including tick and tick-borne diseases (TTBD), that pose a threat to agriculture, public health, and the wellbeing of American citizens. TTBD burden the health of human, livestock, and wildlife populations around the world. Safer and more environmentally friendly technologies are required to manage TTBD. Hypothesis-driven research is advancing scientific knowledge, which can be translated to innovate TTBD control methods. Advancing tests to demonstrate the benefit of using different technologies together will help document that integrated tick management is a viable option to mitigate the burden of TTBD effectively. Here, we summarize recent collaborative research by the USDA-ARS on integrated tick control and eradication. Our research efforts in Puerto Rico on integrated control of cattle fever ticks (CFT) exemplify the benefits of adapting the management strategy to deal with invasive tick vectors and associated TBD such as bovine babesiosis and anaplasmosis as is the case with the CFT Rhipicephalus microplus and R. annulatus. We are adapting the concept of precision agriculture to interdisciplinary research conducted in partnership with wildlife biologists and others to understand aspects of the cattle-white-tailed deer and nilgai interface that are conducive to the spread of CFT across the landscape. This research offers the opportunity to further assess tick-host-landscape interactions and provides the means to assess the efficacy of integrated approaches that could be adopted by the Cattle Fever Tick Eradication Program of the USA to enhance efforts to keep the national cattle herd CFT-free. Research by the Veterinary Pest Genomics Center of the USDA-ARS is enabling exciting opportunities to translate scientific knowledge into safer and efficacious technologies, such as anti-tick vaccines, that can be integrated to manage TTBD effectively.