Biology (B.S.B.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

Lance Durden


Scanning Electron Micrographs were prepared of four morphologically diagnostic regions (dorsal capitulum, ventral capitulum, scutum, leg coxae) for the larval stage of the 16 species of ixodid (hard) ticks known to parasitize humans in the USA. These species are: Amblyomma americanum, A. maculatum, A. mixtum, A. tuberculatum, Dermacentor albipictus, D. andersoni, D. occidentalis, D. variabilis, Haemaphysalis leporispalustris, Ixodes angustus, I. cookei, I. pacificus, I. scapularis, I. spinipalpis, I. texanus, and Rhipicephalus sanguineus. Based on the morphological characters observed, a dichotomous identification key to ixodid larvae that parasitize humans in the USA was prepared. Common names, hosts and geographical distributions are included for each tick species.