Review on the Impact of Ticks on Livestock Health and Productivity

Bekalu Gerem Eskezia


Ticks are obligate haematophagous ectoparasites of domestic and wild animals as well as humans, considered to be second world-wide vectors of human diseases. They are the most important ectoparasites of livestock in tropical and sub-tropical areas, and are responsible for severe economic losses both through the direct effects of blood sucking and indirectly as vectors of pathogens. The present review is focused on impact of tick on livestock productivity and health. Loss of blood is a direct effect of ticks acting as potential vector for haemo-protozoa and helminth parasites. Blood sucking by large numbers of ticks causes reduction in live weight and anemia among domestic animals, while their bites also reduce the quality of hides and skin. The impact of ticks on livestock production and health includes tick borne disease morbidity and mortality, huge loss of milk and meat production, damage on the quality of skin and hide and cost for tick and tick borne disease control and prevention. The economic losses due to ticks can be expressed either in terms of body weight or milk production lost or treatment cost employed for its prevention and control. The implementation of rational and sustainable tick control programs in grazing animals is dependent upon the knowledge of the ecology and epidemiology of ticks. Major tick controlling techniques such as biological and chemical control methods, grazing management, genetic manipulation and vaccination could be employed. The prolonged and incorrect use of tick chemicals can lead to resistance in ticks, enabling the ticks to tolerate and survive chemical applications and making tick control in the future much more difficult. Therefore, appropriate method of control and prevention of ticks should be formulated based on the ecological and epidemiological study done ahead of time, appropriate tick drug handling and management should be practiced to prevent the drug resistance and deep investigation should be done on the preparation and application of vaccines which could be a successful prevention method in the future.

Keywords: Control, Health, Livestock, Prevention, Production, Ticks.

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3208 ISSN (Online)2225-093X

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