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Asian Longhorned Tick

Cattle producers need to monitor their cattle herds for this new dangerous tick.

Nashville, Ark. – Cattle producers throughout Arkansas are being urged to monitor their herds for unusual ticks and to take measures to prevent the spread of theileriosis and other tick-related diseases. These warnings follow recent findings of Asian longhorned ticks in northwest Arkansas by scientists with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. This tick can transmit the Theileria orientalis parasite. The Ikeda genotype of this organism can be fatal to cattle. Right now, there is no treatment for the theileriosis this organism causes, and the survivors of the infection will carry the parasite for life.

Asian longhorned ticks are small. The adult female is only about the size of a pea when full of blood. Kelly Lofton, extension entomologist for the Division of Agriculture, recommends that if you find a tick that does not look familiar, bring it to your county agent along with all of the information you can about where and what it was found on. “We would want to know if the host animal was a cow or calf, or a recent introduction to the herd, or whether it’s been there a month or so,” he said, and “We want to know where the cow came from, if they just brought it home.” Prevention is key to minimize the risk of an Asian longhorned tick infestation in your herds. Jeremy Powell, veterinarian and animal science professor, suggests using insecticidal ear tags or insecticide-infused back rubbers cattle can walk under. Both Loftin and Powell said awareness by those in agriculture of these ticks and the diseases they could transmit is key “so people can be looking out for it.”

For more information on the Asian longhorned tick you can contact the Howard County Extension office at 870-845-7517 or find helpful fact sheets on our website at The Cooperative Extension Service is part of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

By Dawson Bailey
County Extension Agent - Agriculture
The Cooperative Extension Service
U of A System Division of Agriculture

Media Contact: Dawson Bailey
County Extension Agent - Agriculture
U of A Division of Agriculture
Cooperative Extension Service
421 N. Main Nashville AR 71852
(870) 845-7517


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