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gnathosoma of Argas monolakensis
Source: Wikimedia Commons
Vernacular names
• Deutsch: Lederzecken
• English: soft ticks
tampan ticks
• Español: garrapatas blandas
• Français: tiques molles

Argasidae - (soft ticks)

The family of soft ticks (also called tampan ticks) contains around 200 species which are common in the tropics and subtropics. They have a weakly sclerotized cuticle and are often extremely flat when starved. Many species can use various hosts like birds, bats, reptiles and mammals. This includes humans and livestock like chicken, cattle or pigs.

The life cycle includes the egg, larval stage, 3-4 nymphal stages and the adult stage. Compared to other licks, they often feed only briefly, for example 30 minutes. Several are known to transmit diseases. The adults are typically 3-4 mm long, lack a dorsal shield and the gnathosoma is located on the ventral side of the body.

The following genera are currently entered in the system: