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    Harris, Stephen and Thompson, Gordon B. 2009. Populations of the ticks Ixodes (Pholeoixodes) hexagonus and Ixodes (Pholeoixodes) canisuga infesting suburban foxes, Vulpes vulpes. Journal of Zoology, Vol. 186, Issue. 1, p. 83.

    SCHARLEMANN, J. P. W. JOHNSON, P. J. SMITH, A. A. MACDONALD, D. W. and RANDOLPH, S. E. 2008. Trends in ixodid tick abundance and distribution in Great Britain. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, Vol. 22, Issue. 3, p. 238.

    Ogden, N. H. Cripps, P. Davison, C. C. Owen, G. Parry, J. M. Timms, B. J. and Forbes, A. B. 2000. The ixodid tick species attaching to domestic dogs and cats in Great Britain and Ireland. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, Vol. 14, Issue. 3, p. 332.

    Lawrie, Charles H. Randolph, Sarah E. and Nuttall, Patricia A. 1999. Ixodes Ticks: Serum Species Sensitivity of Anticomplement Activity. Experimental Parasitology, Vol. 93, Issue. 4, p. 207.

    Papadopoulos, Byron Morel, Pierre Claude and Aeschlimann, André 1996. Ticks of domestic animals in the Macedonia region of Greece. Veterinary Parasitology, Vol. 63, Issue. 1-2, p. 25.

    GERN, LISE TOUTOUNGI, LINA N. HU, CHANG MIN and AESCHLIMANN, ANDRE 1991. Ixodes (Pholeoixodes) hexagonus, an efficient vector of Borrelia burgdorferi in the laboratory. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, Vol. 5, Issue. 4, p. 431.

    MATUSCHKA, FRANZ-RAINER RICHTER, DANIA FISCHER, PETER and SPIELMAN, ANDREW 1990. Nocturnal detachment of the tick Ixodes hexagonus from nocturnally active hosts. Medical and Veterinary Entomology, Vol. 4, Issue. 4, p. 415.

    Gilot, B. and Marjolet, M. 1982. Contribution à l'étude du parasitisme humain par les tiques (Ixodidae et Argasidae), plus particulièrement dans le sud-est de la France. Médecine et Maladies Infectieuses, Vol. 12, Issue. 6, p. 340.

    Arthur, Don. R. 1965. Advances in Parasitology Volume 3.

    Mead-Briggs, A.R. and Hughes, A.M. 1965. Records of mites and lice from wild rabbits collected throughout Great Britain. Journal of Natural History Series 13, Vol. 8, Issue. 96, p. 695.


The host relationships of Ixodes hexagonus Leach in Britain

  • D. R. Arthur (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 April 2009

On the available data from south Wales and southeast England, the tick Ixodes hexagonus Leach has spring and autumn peaks of activity on hedgehogs, stoats and weasels.

One or more stages of this tick have been recorded on fifteen mammalian hosts. All stages have been collected from hedgehogs, stoats, foxes, polecats and ferrets. The weasel is probably the smallest habitual host. No specimens of I. hexagonus have been found on birds.

Man is an ‘accidental’ host and records of this tick on man in the London area are given. From the present information it seems that ill-effects following the bite of this parasite are rare. In built-up areas the probable sources of infestation are dogs, cats and hedgehogs. Air-raid shelters and similar constructions which have harboured these hosts at one time or another may provide a centre of infestation of man. Our observations indicate that the number of ticks in most hedgehogs' nests is not large. Nothing is known of the tick population in the habitats of other hosts. It is suggested tentatively that the ticks may drop off hedgehogs away from the nest and that after further development (i.e. hatching of eggs and metamorphoses of later stages) they are picked up by such animals as foxes, stoats, weasels.

The records of this tick in Britain are summarized and they indicate that I. hexagonus is a southern species.

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D. R. Arthur (1952 a). Ann. Mag. Nat. Hist. Ser. 12, 5, 305.

E. Browning & H. K. Airy-Shaw (1944). Proc. Linn. Soc. Lond. 156, 96.

G. O. Evans (1951). Bull. Ent. Res. 41, 469.

G. H. F. Nuttall (1911). Parasitology, 4, 46.

G. H. F. Nuttall (1915). Parasitology, 7, 258.

C. L. Walton (1918). Parasitology, 10, 206.

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