Menu

Invasive Tick Species Spreads in Eastern US

The Asian longhorned tick, first found in the country last year, is now present in several states.

Aug 7, 2018
Shawna Williams
An engorged female Haemphysalis longicornis tick
WIKIMEDIA, COMMONSOURCE

An invasive tick species first identified inside the US in New Jersey last fall has apparently survived the winter and has now popped up in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, Virginia, West Virginia, and New York. So far, the longhorned tick (Haemaphysalis longicornis), which transmits several serious illnesses in Asian countries, has not been found to carry any diseases in the US. But swarms of the arachnids have been known to suck so much blood from livestock that they cause anemia, or even kill the animals.

“The jury’s still out on how big a threat this is,” Ben Beard, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s deputy director of vector-borne diseases, tells The New York Times. “But we think it’s a very important question to address.”

The tick was first found in 2017 when a woman went to a Hunterdon County, New Jersey, public health department after she sheared a sheep and found ticks on herself. An entomologist with the department tells The Times that she turned out to be covered with more than 1,000 of the animals, which were frozen and later identified by Andrea Egizi of Rutgers University.

Trib LIVE notes that the ticks reproduce asexually, and can lay 2,000 eggs after feeding. They are very small and difficult to distinguish from other species. Pennsylvania state veterinarian David Wolfgang tells the outlet, “Scientists don’t yet know how this species will adapt to the North American climate and animal hosts, but we know it survived New Jersey’s winter and has infested sheep and cattle in this region.”

November 2018

Intelligent Science

Wrapping our heads around human smarts

Marketplace

Sponsored Product Updates

Slice® Safety Cutters for Lab Work

Slice® Safety Cutters for Lab Work

Slice cutting tools—which feature our patent-pending safety blades—meet many lab-specific requirements. Our scalpels and craft knives are well suited for delicate work, and our utility knives are good for general use.

The Lab of the Future: Alinity Poised to Reinvent Clinical Diagnostic Testing and Help Improve Healthcare

The Lab of the Future: Alinity Poised to Reinvent Clinical Diagnostic Testing and Help Improve Healthcare

Every minute counts when waiting for accurate diagnostic test results to guide critical care decisions, making today's clinical lab more important than ever. In fact, nearly 70 percent of critical care decisions are driven by a diagnostic test.

LGC announces new, integrated, global portfolio brand, Biosearch Technologies, representing genomic tools for mission critical customer applications

LGC announces new, integrated, global portfolio brand, Biosearch Technologies, representing genomic tools for mission critical customer applications

LGC’s Genomics division announced it is transforming its branding under LGC, Biosearch Technologies, a unified portfolio brand integrating optimised genomic analysis technologies and tools to accelerate scientific outcomes.