G. Karbowiak, M. Stanko, M. Miterpáková
Mar 25, 2020
Distribution and biology of Pholeoixodes ticks is not very well understood. The goal of the study was to collect new data on the Pholeoixodes tick occurrence in Slovakia. Tick infestation of red foxes in the regions of Košice, Prešov, Bratislava and Žilina was studied during the period 2017–2018. Ticks were collected from the fur of animals using tweezers and identified using appropriate keys. In total, 146 red foxes (Vulpes vulpes) were investigated. In total, 39 (26.7%) of animals were found to be infected with ticks from five species. Pholeoixodes ticks were found on 13 (3.4%) of the foxes: Ixodes hexagonus (Leach, 1815) on 5 specimens (3.4%), in the Košice, Prešov and Žilina regions; I. crenulatus (Koch, 1844) on 8 specimens (5.5%) in the Prešov and Bratislava regions; Ixodes ricinus (Linnaeus, 1758) collected from 25 (17.2%) foxes in every locality; Dermacentor reticulatus (Fabricius, 1794) from 5 foxes (3.4%) in the Košice, Prešov and Žilina regions; Haemaphysalis concinna (Koch, 1844), from 4 foxes (2.8%) from the Košice region. Ixodes hexagonus has been previously recorded in Slovakia. However, this is the first finding of I. crenulatus in the country. The morphological features of the I. crenulatus specimens found in Slovakia were identical to those of ticks described in Poland and descriptions given in identification keys.