BURDEN, SEASONALITY, SEX RATIO AND PREFERRED SITES OF TICKS OF PUBLIC HEALTH IMPORTANCE ON CATTLE FOUND AT AMANSEA, ANAMBRA STATE NIGERIA
Keywords:Cattle, Ticks, Tick-Bites, Tick-Borne Disease, Tick Control, TBD Surveillance
Cattle from arid north which graze at Amansea in southern Nigeria were thought to introduceticks in the new area. Burden, seasonality, sex ratio and preferred sites of ticks on cattle were studied in late wet season of 2012 and early dry season of 2013 at Amansea. Cattle (n=200) were randomly selected and examined both visually and manualy for tick infestation. Genera Amblyomma, Boophilus, Hyalomma and Rhipicephalus species constituted 69.6; 11.9; 13.8 and 7 percentagesof all ticks encountered, at 2.87 ticks per infested cattle. Wet and dry seasons accounted for 68% and 32% of the ticks, generally in ratio of 1.9♂:1♀. Preferred sites were in descending order of magnitude; scrotum\udder, tail, back, fore leg, neck, ear, dewlap, groin, head (face), brisket, belly, shoulder, side, hind leg and escutcheon (χ2=175.8472, df =42, P<0.01). Potential tick-bites areas which abound in Amansea are risk factors fortick-borne diseases (TBD) known to be transmitted by ticks in West Africa. Results from this study will create public awareness on TBD and may be useful in evidence-based policy decisions on restriction of cattle movement, tick control and surveillance of TBD in the area.
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