Document Detail

Activity periods and questing behavior of the seabird tick Ixodes uriae (Acari: Ixodidae) on Gull Island, Newfoundland: the role of puffin chicks.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  17539407     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Questing behavior of Ixodes uriae and their associated seasonal, host-feeding patterns are crucial to our understanding of tick life history strategies and the ecology of diseases that they transmit. Consequently, we quantified questing behavior of nymphs and adult female I. uriae ticks at Gull Island, a seabird colony in Newfoundland, Canada, to examine seasonal variation of off-host and on-host tick activity. We sampled a total of 133 adult Atlantic puffins (Fratercula arctica), 152 puffin chicks, and 145 herring gull (Larus argentatus) chicks for ticks during the breeding seasons of 2004 and 2005. Questing ticks were sampled by dragging a white flannel cloth across the grassy breeding areas during the mo of May, June, July, and August. Nymph questing activity reached a peak during mid-July (79 and 110 individuals/hr in 2004 and 2005, respectively). The prevalence of nymphs and adult female ticks on different seabird hosts varied between years and during the seasons. Puffin chicks had the highest prevalence (above 70% in July) of nymphs in both years and this was correlated with questing activity. Female ticks rarely fed on puffin chicks, but were prevalent on adult puffins and gulls, although prevalence and questing of ticks were not correlated in these hosts. These patterns of off-host and on-host tick activity suggests that I. uriae ticks likely use a combination of questing and passive waiting, e.g., in puffin burrows, to detect hosts, depending on the tick stage and the host species.
Sabir B Muzaffar; Ian L Jones
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The Journal of parasitology     Volume:  93     ISSN:  0022-3395     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Parasitol.     Publication Date:  2007 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2007-06-01     Completed Date:  2007-06-14     Revised Date:  2007-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  7803124     Medline TA:  J Parasitol     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  258-64     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Biology, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John's, Newfoundland, Canada.
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MeSH Terms
Age Factors
Bird Diseases / epidemiology,  parasitology*
Charadriiformes / parasitology*,  physiology
Feeding Behavior
Host-Parasite Interactions
Ixodes / growth & development,  physiology*
Newfoundland and Labrador / epidemiology
Nymph / growth & development,  physiology
Tick Infestations / epidemiology,  parasitology,  veterinary*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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