Abstract

The aim of this study was to determine species diversity and geographic distribution of ticks in Southern Thailand. Ticks were collected from 10 provinces including Nakhon Si Thammarat, SuratThani, Songkhla, Trang, Chumphon, Phatthalung, Ranong, Krabi, Phuket, and Pattani (36districts). Ticks were gently removed from host skin. Additional information was obtained during tick collection including type of hosts and location of hosts. Stages and species of ticks were identified according to the taxonomic keys. A total of 651 ticks were collected from dogs, cats, cows, chickens, a peacock, a deer, and a tapir. Tick species were identified into two genera; Haemaphysalisand Rhipicephalus which were 6 species i.e. Haemaphysalis sp., H. lagrangei, H. wellingtoni, Rhipicephalus sp., R. microplus and R. sanguineus s.l. Of these species H. wellingtoniand R. microplus were specifically found in avian hosts (chickens and a peacock) and cows, respectively. H. lagrangei were found in a deer and a tapir. R. sanguineuss.l. was the most frequently found tick species in dogs. The distribution of tick species in east and west coasts of Southern Thailand is similar. For example, the tick species found from the same host types of dogs, cattle and chicken are the same. In this study, H. lagrangei was found only in the east coast. Nevertheless, this tick species was found only in deer and tapir which could not be collected from west coast of this work and need further collection and investigations. However, R. sanguineus s.l. is mostly distributed tick from dogs in both areas (east and west coasts) of southern Thailand