Longhorned tick

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Haemaphysalis longicornis
Haemaphysalis longicornis 1.jpg
Engorged female, dorsal view
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Arachnida
Subclass: Acari
Order: Ixodida
Family: Ixodidae
Genus: Haemaphysalis
Species: H. longicornis
Binomial name
Haemaphysalis longicornis
Neumann, 1901

The longhorned tick (Haemaphysalis longicornis), also known as the bush tick or cattle tick,[1] is a parasitic arachnid belonging to the Ixodidae family of ticks. The longhorned tick is a known livestock pest, especially in New Zealand, and can transmit a disease called theileriosis to cattle but not to humans. However, the tick has been associated with several other tickborne diseases in humans.

Geographic distribution[edit]

The longhorned tick is native to temperate areas of East and Central Asia, including China, Korea, and Japan, as well as Pacific islands including Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Hawaii, to name a few.[2]

The species was not known to be present on the mainland United States until November 9, 2017, when it was first discovered on a sheep farm in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, although it had been intercepted at U.S. ports on import animals and materials at least a dozen times.[1] Attempts to eradicate the species from New Jersey failed; the tick successfully overwintered and has since become established in the state as an invasive species.[3][4][5] As of July 2018, the tick has been confirmed to be present on Long Island, Suffolk County, New York,[citation needed] sheep in Hunterdon County, New Jersey,[1] a calf in Albemarle County, Virginia,[6] a horse[7] and an adult human[citation needed] in two separate locations in Warren County, Virginia, cattle at two separate locations in Hardy County, West Virginia,[8] a dog in Benton County, Arkansas,[9] and on a deer in Union County, New Jersey.[10] In July of 2018, the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed he first recorded finding of the species in North Carolina on an opossum in Polk County.[11]


The seasonal feeding and reproductive cycle resembles that of other ticks. The tick can reproduce sexually or by an asexual process called parthenogenesis. The latter exist in northern Japan and Russia, whereas the former exist in southern Japan, southern Korea and southern parts of the former Soviet Union. An aneuploid race capable of both sexual and asexual reproduction capability exists in China. Unfed ticks can survive for close to a year, nymphs and adult females the longest, depending on temperature and humidity. [2]:6–7


The longhorned tick parasitizes mammals and birds. It spreads quickly in farm animals such as cattle, horses, sheep, pigs, and chicken. Natural infestations have been found on wild animals like bear, deer, foxes, hares, and small mammals like rats, ferrets, and birds, the latter hosting the ticks. It has also been found on cats, dogs, and humans.[2]:4

Disease vector[edit]

The longhorned tick can transmit an animal disease called theileriosis to cattle, which can cause considerable blood loss and occasional death of calves, but mainly is important to dairy farmers because of decreased milk production and sheep farmers because of decreased wool quantity and quality.[2]:4–5

Lyme spirochetes, spotted fever group rickettsiae,[12] Ehrlichia chaffeensis, and Anaplasma bovis have been detected in H. longicornis.[13]

It has been associated with Russian spring-summer encephalitis, Powassan virus, Khasan virus, tick-borne encephalitis virus.[2]:4 and Severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome.[3]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c "Exotic Tick Species Identified on Hunterdon County Farm". Department of Agriculture, State of New Jersey. 2017-11-21. Retrieved 2017-12-02. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Rachel Cane Haemaphysalis longicornis Neumann, 1901 Profile New Zealand Biosecure Entomology Laboratory, April 2010, 9pp.
  3. ^ a b Lee, Bruce Y. (2018-04-21). "New Jersey Is Dealing with a Tick Species That Is New to America". Forbes. Retrieved 2018-04-22. 
  4. ^ "A swarming, exotic tick species is now living year round in N.J." 2018-04-21. Retrieved 2018-04-22. 
  5. ^ Taylor, Dan (2018-04-21). "Shocking discovery in New Jersey, authorities scrambling". Morning Ticker. Retrieved 2018-04-22. 
  6. ^ Bryan McKenzie: Exotic tick found on orphaned Albemarle calf, https://www.dailyprogress.com/news/local/exotic-tick-found-on-orphaned-albemarle-calf/article_580ff15a-595e-11e8-948e-a3649da4d7b4.html, May 16, 2018.
  7. ^ Melissa Topey, mtopey@nvdaily.com: Exotic invasive tick found in Warren County, The Northern Virginia Daily, http://www.nvdaily.com/news/local-news/2018/05/exotic-invasive-tick-found-in-warren-county/, MAY 31, 2018, retrieved 12 Jul 2018.
  8. ^ WOWK-TV, Charleston, WV: Exotic tick found in West Virginia, Department of Agriculture says May 23, 2018, retrieved May 28, 2018.
  9. ^ Hannah Grabenstein Rare type of tick inexplicably turns up in Arkansas The Associated Press, June 12, 2018.
  10. ^ Chris Sheldon, NJ Advance Media for NJ.com: East Asian tick is now confirmed in second N.J. county 2 April 2018, retrieved 28 May 2018.
  11. ^ "New exotic tick species found in NC". 2018-07-12. Retrieved 2018-07-12. 
  12. ^ Meng Z.; Jiang L. P.; Lu Q. Y.; Cheng S. Y.; Ye J. L.; Zhan L. (December 2008). "[Detection of co-infection with Lyme spirochetes and spotted fever group rickettsiae in a group of Haemaphysalis longicornis]". Zhonghua Liu Xing Bing Xue Za Zhi (in Chinese). 29 (12): 1217–1220. PMID 19173967. 
  13. ^ Mi-Jin Lee; Joon-Seok Chae (2010). "Molecular detection of Ehrlichia chaffeensis and Anaplasma bovis in the salivary glands from Haemaphysalis longicornis ticks". Vector-Borne and Zoonotic Diseases. 10 (4): 411–413. doi:10.1089/vbz.2008.0215. PMID 19874189. 

External links[edit]