Amblyomma aureolatum (Pallas, 1772) and Amblyomma ovale Koch, 1844 (Acari: Ixodidae): hosts, distribution and 16S rDNA sequences

A A Guglielmone, A Estrada-Peña, A J Mangold, D M Barros-Battesti, M B Labruna, J R Martins, J M Venzal, M Arzua, J E Keirans
Veterinary Parasitology 2003 May 1, 113 (3): 273-88
DNA sequences of Amblyomma aureolatum (Pallas, 1772) and Amblyomma ovale Koch, 1844 were obtained to determine genetic differences between these tick species. Collections of these species are discussed in relation to distribution and hosts. Seven ticks collections (four from Brazil, one from Argentina, one from Uruguay and one from USA) house a total of 1272 A. aureolatum (224 males, 251 females, 223 nymphs and 574 larvae) and 1164 A. ovale (535 males, 556 females, 66 nymphs and 7 larvae). The length of the sequenced mitochondrial 16S rRNA gene fragment for A. aureolatum was 370bp and for A. ovale was 373bp. The DNA sequence analysis showed a 13.1% difference between the two species. Apart from one male A. ovale found on a toad, all adult ticks were found on mammals. The majority of adult specimens of both tick species were removed from Carnivora (96.1 and 84.3% of A. aureolatum and A. ovale, respectively), especially from dogs (53.1% of A. aureolatum, and 46.4% of A. ovale). Collections on wild Canidae were higher for A. aureolatum (23.3%) than for A. ovale (7.1%). On the other hand, collections of A. ovale adults on wild Felidae were higher (18.3%) than findings of A. aureolatum (9.2%). The contribution of other mammalian orders as hosts for adults of A. aureolatum and A. ovale was irrelevant, with the exception of Perissodactyla because Tapiridae contributed with 13.0% of the total number of A. ovale adults. Adults of both tick species have been found occasionally on domestic hosts (apart of the dog) and humans. Most immature stages of A. aureolatum were found on Passeriformes birds, while rodents and carnivores were the most common hosts for nymphs and larvae of A. ovale. A. aureolatum has been found restricted to the Neotropical region, covering the eastern area of South America from Uruguay to Surinam, including northeastern Argentina, eastern Paraguay, southeastern Brazil and French Guiana. A. ovale showed a distribution that covers the Neotropical region from central-northern Argentina throughout the Neotropics into the Nearctic region of Mexico with a few records from the USA, also with collection sites in Paraguay, Bolivia, most Brazilian states, Peru, Ecuador, French Guiana, Surinam, Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago, Venezuela, Colombia, Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Belize, Guatemala and several states of Mexico.

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