Rising burden of immature sheep ticks (Ixodes ricinus) on red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scoticus) chicks in the Scottish uplands

A. D. Kirby, A. A. Smith, T. G. Benton, Peter John Hudson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

43 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The sheep tick Ixodes ricinus (L.) (Acari: Ixodidae) is an ectoparasite of major economic and pathogenic importance in Scotland, Its distribution in the Scottish uplands is assumed to be governed by the abundance and distribution of its definitive hosts (deer and sheep) and climatic variables such as temperature and rainfall. As the numbers of its major host in Scotland, red deer, have increased dramatically and climatic conditions have become more favourable, the level of parasitism could have been expected to rise. We use data gathered from tick counts on over 4000 red grouse chicks Lagopus lagopus scoticus Latham (Galliformes: Tetraonidae) in various experiments over the past 19 years to ascertain whether the intensity and prevalence of parasitism has been increasing. From 1985 to 2003 the average tick burden of a parasitized red grouse chick has grown from 2.60 ± 1.12 ticks per chick to 12.71 ± 1.44. Over this period the percentage of chicks of a given brood parasitized has also increased from 4 ± 2% to 92 ± 3%. The possible implications of this increase in parasitism for red grouse production are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-70
Number of pages4
JournalMedical and Veterinary Entomology
Volume18
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2004

Fingerprint

Lagopus lagopus scoticus
Ixodes
Ixodes ricinus
tick
Ticks
sheep
ticks
Sheep
highlands
chicks
immatures
parasitism
Deer
Scotland
deer
Galliformes
Phasianidae
definitive host
Ixodidae
ectoparasite

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Insect Science
  • veterinary(all)

Cite this

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title = "Rising burden of immature sheep ticks (Ixodes ricinus) on red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scoticus) chicks in the Scottish uplands",
abstract = "The sheep tick Ixodes ricinus (L.) (Acari: Ixodidae) is an ectoparasite of major economic and pathogenic importance in Scotland, Its distribution in the Scottish uplands is assumed to be governed by the abundance and distribution of its definitive hosts (deer and sheep) and climatic variables such as temperature and rainfall. As the numbers of its major host in Scotland, red deer, have increased dramatically and climatic conditions have become more favourable, the level of parasitism could have been expected to rise. We use data gathered from tick counts on over 4000 red grouse chicks Lagopus lagopus scoticus Latham (Galliformes: Tetraonidae) in various experiments over the past 19 years to ascertain whether the intensity and prevalence of parasitism has been increasing. From 1985 to 2003 the average tick burden of a parasitized red grouse chick has grown from 2.60 ± 1.12 ticks per chick to 12.71 ± 1.44. Over this period the percentage of chicks of a given brood parasitized has also increased from 4 ± 2{\%} to 92 ± 3{\%}. The possible implications of this increase in parasitism for red grouse production are discussed.",
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Rising burden of immature sheep ticks (Ixodes ricinus) on red grouse (Lagopus lagopus scoticus) chicks in the Scottish uplands. / Kirby, A. D.; Smith, A. A.; Benton, T. G.; Hudson, Peter John.

In: Medical and Veterinary Entomology, Vol. 18, No. 1, 03.2004, p. 67-70.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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