Similarity in ixodid tick communities harboured by wildlife and livestock in the Albany Thicket Biome of South Africa

Ivan G. Horak, Kerstin Junker, Boris R. Krasnov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


South Africa has a diverse fauna of ixodid tick species, several of which are of medical or veterinary importance. Elucidation of which host or environmental characteristics determine the composition and abundance of tick assemblages is, therefore, highly relevant to disease management and wildlife conservation efforts. Here, we analysed the similarity in ixodid tick assemblages of three wildlife and three livestock species in a natural (Great Fish River Reserve) and anthropogenic (an adjacent farm) habitat in South Africa. We compared tick infracommunities of three wild host species between the reserve and the farm; of three wild host species within the reserve and of wild and livestock species on the farm (considering body size). Hosts examined in this study harboured the adults and immature stages of 11 tick species belonging to five ixodid genera. Notably, several tick species of South African wildlife have successfully made the switch to livestock and thus both wild hosts and livestock now contribute to the pool of maintenance hosts for these ticks as well as their associated pathogens. This is an important consideration when translocating wildlife or livestock as part of farming or conservation activities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)667-674
Number of pages8
Issue number5
StatePublished - 4 Apr 2022


  • Analysis of similarities
  • Ixodidae
  • South Africa
  • livestock
  • tick infracommunities
  • wildlife

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Infectious Diseases
  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • Parasitology


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