Genus AMBLYOMMA Koch, 1844


áThis genus is the third largest in the family Ixodidae, with its species primarily occupying the torrid zones of all the continents. The centre of species diversity is on the American continent, where half of all the species occur. On this continent, Amblyomma species reach far beyond the torrid zone, up to the 40th parallel in the northern hemisphere, to the 50th parallel in the southern hemisphere, and even reaches the alpine zone of the Andes. This genus also occupies adjacent islands (the Antilles and Galapagos), where it produces endemic forms. An extremely wide range of hosts is characteristic of the genus. Amblyomma ticks parasitize members of all classes of land vertebrates (Amphibia, Reptilia, Aves, and Mammalia). Almost one third of the species parasitize various reptiles (tortoises, lizards, and snakes), and even sea snakes are among their hosts. One species (A. sparsum) has an unusual combination of hosts: rhinoceros and tortoises.

áSome species of Amblyomma may be extremely abundant and harmful to animal husbandry. A few members of this genus can be vectors of various human and animal diseases. These members include A. variegatum, A. hebraeum, A. cajennense, and A. americanum, among others.


1. Amblyomma albolimbatum Neumann, 1907


Map 6

áAustralia (West Australia and South Australia).

áPrincipal hosts of all stages are lizards, but mainly the skink Trachydosaurus rugosus. Ticks are also found on snakes.

áLiterature: Roberts (1970), Smyth (1973).


2. Amblyomma albopictum Neumann, 1899


Map 62

áCuba and Haiti Islands, Honduras (Suon Island) and Costa Rica.

áSpecies parasitize the iguanas Cyclura macleayi, C. cornuta, and Leiocephalus carinatus, but have also been found on the boa Epicrates angulifer. All stages were found on their animal hosts.

áLiterature: Guglielmone et al. (2003a), Voltzit (2007).


3. Amblyomma americanum (Linnaeus, 1758)


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áMexico (Coahuila, Nuevo Léon, Tamaulipas), in the USA as far north as New York and Iowa, and as far west as Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas.

áOccurs in forests and scrubs.

áAll stages feed on a wide range of large and middle-sized mammals, including both wild and domestic animals. Immature ticks are often found on birds (turkeys and quails) and squirrels. Foxes and raccoons are often heavily infested with ticks, but the preferable host for all stages is the white-tailed deer Odocoileus virginianus. All stages may attack humans.

áThe life cycle for this species is two years. In Oklahoma, females of this tick parasitize livestock from March to July with maximum infestation in April to June. Males are found on hosts all year round.

áThis is one of the most harmful ticks to animal husbandry in the USA. It is a vector of tularaemia, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Lyme disease, and theileriosis in white-tailed deer.

áLiterature: Cooley and Kohls (1944), McKeon et al. (1982).


4. Amblyomma antillorum Kohls, 1969


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áIslands of West Indies: Anegada, Dominica, and Caicos.

áAll stages parasitize iguanas Iguana pinguis, I. delicatissima, and I. carinata.

áLiterature: Keirans (1985), Guglielmone et al. (2003a), Voltzit (2007).


5. Amblyomma argentinae Neumann, 1904

áAmblyomma testudinis (Conil, 1877)


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áArgentina (Formosa, Cordoba, Catamarca, and Santiago del Estero).

áSpecific parasite of the tortoise Chelonoides (Testudo) chilensis. All stages have been described.

áLiterature: Estrada-Peña et al. (1993), Guglielmone et al. (2001), Acuña et al. (2003), Guglielmone et al. (2003a).


6. Amblyomma astrion Donitz, 1909


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áCentral African Republic, Zaire, Congo, Angola, São Tomé, and Príncipe.

áPrincipal host of imago is the buffalo Syncerus caffer, but ticks have also been found on domestic livestock. Solitary larvae and nymphs have been collected on buffaloes, cattle, and a dog. It is a vector of cowdriosis.

áLiterature: Theiler (1962), Elbl and Anastos (1966), Volzit and Keirans (2004), Walker and Olwage (1987).


7. Amblyomma aureolatum (Pallas, 1772)

áAmblyomma striatum Koch, 1844


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áBrazil (Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Parana, Santa Catarina, and Rio Grande do Sul), Paraguay, Uruguay, Argentina (Misiones, Entre Rios, and Chaco), Surinam (?), and Guyana (?).

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