2005. 13 (1)



About authors:

N. Mikulova, Faculty of Biological Sciences, University of South Bohemia, Branisovska 31,370 05 Ceske Budejovice,
Czech Republic
F. Dusbabek, institute of Parasitology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Branisovska 31, 370 05 Ceske
Budejovice, Czech Republic;
E. A. P. Bouman, institute of Parasitology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Branisovska 31, 370 05 Ceske
Budejovice, Czech Republic;


This research was supported by the research project of the Institute of Parasitology, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic No. Z 60220518 and the Grant No. 206/04/0751 of the Grant Agency of the Czech Republic. The authors would like to thank Marina Golovchenko for translating the abstract to Russian.


Four categories of physiological age were distinguished in females of Ixodes ricinus (L.) according to the morphological characteristics: newly emerged, physiologically young, mature and old ones. No newly emerged females were collected in the field by flagging. Spring and summer cohorts of young females were recorded during the season. The peak occurrence of mature females followed the peaks for young females. Old females occurred mainly during the second half of the season. The mean weight of unfed young females was higher than that of mature and old females. From 25±5 females investigated each week, the number of mated ones started at 11.1 % in March and reached 92.3% in June. A considerable decrease in the number of mated females during August and September up to 40% was followed by an increase to 65%) at the end of season. Only 6 of 25 (24%) mated laboratory females fully engorged without males in contrast to 23 (92%) females engorging with males. The mean weight of fully engorged females feeding together with males was significantly higher (0.30 g) than of females feeding without males (0.24 g). Male presence during feeding of mated female increased the success of female feeding.


Anderson R.B., Scrimgeour G.J., Kaufman W.R. 1998. Responses of the tick, Amblyomma hebraeum (Acari: Ixodidae), to carbon dioxide. Experimantal and Applied Acarology, 22: 667-681.

Babenko L.V., Bush M.A., Arumova E.A., Skandish E.A. 1979. [Seasonal changes in the level of fertil-ity in females of Ixodes ricinus L. and Ixodes persulcatus P. Sch. prior to attachment on the host and the importance of this phenomenon in the life of the tick population]. Meditsinskaya Parazitolo-gia iParazitarniyeBolezni, 48:71-79. [InRussian]

Baslashov Ju. S. 1998. Ixodovye kleshchi — parasity i perenoschiki infektsiy [Ixodid Ticks — Parasites and Vectors of Diseases]. Publisher: Nauka, St. Petersburg, 288 pp. [In Russian]

Beklemishev V.N. 1962. Foreword, In: T.S. Detinova (Ed.), Age-grouping Methods in Diptera of Medi-cal Importance. WHO Monographs, 47: 9-11.

Bouckova I., Dyk V. 1967. Die sommerliche und herb-stliche Tagesaktivitat des gemeinen Holzbocks im Waldgebiete von Jezirko bei Brno. Angewandte Parasitologie, 9: 36-40.

Chmela J. 1969. On the developmental cycle of the common tick (Ixodes ricinus L.) in the North-Moravian natural focus of tick-borne encephalitis. Folia Parasitologica, 16: 313-319.

Cerny V. 1957. [Seasonal dynamic of the tick Ixodes ricinus at the tick infested place]. Ceskoslovanska Parasitologie, 4: 57-84. [In Czech.]

Daniel M., Dusbabek F. 1994. Micrometeorological and microhabitat factors affecting maintenance and dis-semination of tick-borne diseases in the environ-ment. In: D.E. Sonenshine and T.N. Mather (Eds.), Ecological Dynamics ofTick-Borne Zoonoses. Pub-lisher: Oxford University Press, New York, Ox-ford, pp. 91-139.

Daniel M., Dusbabek F., Honzakova E., Olejnicek J. 1976. Influence of microclimate on the life cycle of the common ticks Ixodes ricinus (L.) in the ther-mophilic oak forest. Folia Parasitologica, 23:327-342.

Daniel M., Dusbabek F., Honzakova E., Olejnicek J. 1977. Influence of microclimate on the life cycle of the common tick Ixodes ricinus (L.) in an open area in comparison with forest habitats. Folia Parasito-logica, 24: 149-160.

Dyk V., Bouckova I. 1968. Die Temperature-Feuchte-Relation in der Aktivitat des gemeinen Holzbocks. Angewandte Parasitologie, 9: 83-87.

Estrada-Pena A., Gray J.S., Kahl O. 1996. Variability in cuticular hydrocarbons and phenotypic discrimina-tion of Ixodes ricinus populations (Acarina: Ixodi-dae) from Europe. Experimental and Applied Ac-arology, 20: 457-467.

Feldman-Muhsam В., Borut S., Saliternik-Gi vant S. 1970. Salivary secretion of the male tick during copulation. Journal of Insect Physiology, 16: 1945-1949.

Gladney W.J., Ernst S.E., Oehler D.D. 1974. The Gulf Coast tick: evidence a pheromone produced by males. Journal of Medical Entomology, 11: 303-306.

Graf J.-H.1974. Ecologie et ethologie d'Ixodes ricinus L. en Suisse (Ixodoidea: Ixodidae) III. Copulation, nutrition et ponte. Acarologia, 16: 636-642.

Gray J.S. 1987. Mating and behavioural diapause in Ixodes ricinus L. Experimental and Applied Ac-arology, 13: 61-71.

Gray J.S. 1991. The development and seasonal activity of the tick Ixodes ricinus: a vector of Lyme borre-liosis. Review of Medical and Veterinary Entomol-ogy, 79: 323-333.

Kiszewski A.E., Matuschka F.R., Spielman A. 2001. Mating strategies and spermiogenesis in ixodid ticks. Annual Review of Entomology, 46: 167-182.

Lees A.D., Milne A. 1951. The seasonal and diurnal activities of individual sheep ticks (Ixodes ricinus L.). Parasitology, 41: 189-208.

Milne A. 1944. The ecology of the sheep tick, Ixodes ricinus L. Distribution of the tick in relation to geology, soil and vegetation in Northern England. Parasitology, 35: 186-196.

Norval R.A.I., Peter Т., Yunker C.E., Sonenshine D.E., Burridge M.J. 1991. Responses of the ticks Am-blyomma hebraeum and A. variegatum to known or potential components of the aggregation-attach-ment pheromone II. Attachment stimulation. Ex-perimental and Applied Acarology, 13: 19-26.

Oliver J.H. 1982. Tick Reproduction: Sperm develop-ment and cytogenetics. In: F.D. Obenchain and R. Galun (Eds.), Physiology of ticks. Publisher: Per-gamon Press, Oxford, pp. 245-275.

Papas P.J., Oliver J.H. 1972. Reproduction in ticks: (Acari: Ixodidae) 2. Analysis of the stimulus for rapid and complete feeding of female Dermacentor variabilis (Say). Journal of Medical Entomology, 19: 47-50.

Perez C., Rodhain F. 1977. Biologie d 'Ixodes ricinus L., 1758. I. Ecologie, cycle évolutif. Bulletin de la Societe de Pathologie Exotique, 70: 187-192.

PomerantzevB.1.1935. [To the question of origin of tick foci in Leningrad district]. In : E.N. Pavlovsky (Ed.), Vrediteli zhivotnovodstva. Publisher: Akademia Nauk SSSR, Moskva, pp. 32-110. [In Russian]

Razumova I.V. 2000. A visual method for determining the physiological age of ixodid ticks in vivo. Acari-na, 8: 143-150.

Sonenshine D.E. 1986. Tick pheromones: an overview. In: J.R. Sauer and J.A. Hair (Eds.), Morphology, Physiology and Behavioral Biology of Ticks. Pub-lisher: Ellis Horwood Ltd., Chichester, pp. 342-360.

Uspensky I. 1995. Physiological age of ixodid ticks: Aspects of its determination and application. Jounal of Medical Entomology, 32: 751-764.

Varma M.G.R. 1965. The distribution of Ixodes ricinus in Britain in relation to climate and vegetation. In: B. Rosicky and K. Heyberger (Eds.), Theoretical Questions of Natural Foci of Diseases). Publisher: Publishing House of the Czechoslovak Academy of Sciences, Prague, pp. 301-311.

Weiss B.L., Kaufman W.R. 2004. Two feeding-induced proteins from male gonad trigger engorgement of the female tick Amblyomma hebraeum. Proceed-ings of the National Academy of Science of the U. S. A., 101: 5874-5879.

Walker A.R. 2001. Age structure of a population of Ixodes ricinus (Acari: Ixodidae) in relation to its seasonal questing. Bulletin of Entomological Re-search, 91: 69-78.

Wang H., Nuttall P.A. 1994. Excretion of host immu-noglobulin in tick saliva and detection of Ig binding proteins in tick haemolymph and salivary glands. Parasitology, 109: 525-530.

Wang H., Paesen G.C., Nuttall P. A., Barbour A.G. 1998. Male ticks help their mates to feed. Nature, 391: 753-754.

ZapletalM. 1955. [A contribution to the bionomics and economic importance of the common tick (Ixodes ricinus L)]. Sbornik Vysoke skoly zemedelske a Lesnicke fakulty v Brne, 4: 275-289. [In Czech].