Hyalomma (genus)

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Hyalomma anatolicum excavatum - female (left) and male (right) (click on image to enlarge it)
Author(s): Alan R. Walker
Source: Wikimedia Commons

Hyalomma Koch, 1844 - (bont-legged ticks)

The genus contains around 30 species which are found in the old world. They often parasitize livestock and also bite humans. Several species transmit diseases to humans and livestock like the Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever. The bites cause serious wounds and the surrounding tissue becomes necrotic. The species usually have 3 hosts, but some species have only 1 or 2 hosts. Immatures feed preferentially on rodents, hares (Lagomorpha) and birds, while the main hosts of adults are cattle and other Bovidae.

Adults are medium large to large, the scutum has a brown colour. The legs are slender and usually have pale rings. Eyes are present and convex. The anal groove is posterior to the anus. The posterior end of the abdomen has festoons, a series of groves, which however may not be very distinct.

Currently, the following species have been entered into the system: