, Volume 57, Issue 2, pp 171-178
Date: 14 Mar 2012

Underwater survival of Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Acari: Ixodidae)

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Abstract

Rhipicephalus sanguineus (Acari: Ixodidae) is a worldwide distributed tick, also due to its adaptability to different environmental conditions. In order to assess its ability to survive and to lay eggs after water immersion, 150 engorged females from southern Italy were water immersed for 1–15 days whereas eggs were flooded for 1–5 days. All females survived water immersion for 48 h, some of them up to 72 h, but egg hatch rate was negatively correlated with female submersion period. All eggs flooded for up to 120 h hatched successfully. These findings suggest that R. sanguineus is able to survive underwater for some days without loosing any biological activity. This feature should be considered in relation to its potential to spread to new areas and to its role as a vector of pathogens also in consideration of changes in climate the Earth is currently experiencing.