2019 Student Research Conference:
32nd Annual Student Research Conference

Cohort Determination of Field Caught Adult Dermacentor variabilis Using Hemoglobin Concentration


Grace L. Steck
Dr. Stephanie A. Fore, Faculty Mentor

Dermacentor variabilis, the American dog tick, exhibits a three stage life cycle. The ticks hatch as larvae, molt into nymphs, then finally to adults, acquiring a new host in each stage to provide a blood meal for energy requirements. The objective of my study was to determine if the activity of adult D. variabilis can be attributed to two different cohorts, providing information on how long the species takes to complete its life cycle. The hemoglobin content of field caught adult ticks was determined using spectrophotometry to identify the physiological age of the ticks. Though no statistically significant trends in hemoglobin content were found, the data provides preliminary findings in an area of ecology that has many opportunities for future research into this important vector.

Keywords: American dog tick, Dermacentor variabilis, life cycle, hemoglobin, cohort, adult ticks

Topic(s):Biology

Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 208-5
Location: MC 209
Time: 11:15

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