Skip to main content Accessibility help

Wild carnivores, domestic dogs and ticks: shared parasitism in the Brazilian Cerrado

  • V. N. Ramos (a1), F. G. Lemos (a2), F. C. Azevedo (a2), R. C. Arrais (a3), C. F. M. Lima (a4), I. Z. Candeias (a5), M. M. Martins (a1), A. C. L. G. Sandrin (a1), S. M. Siqueira (a1) and M. P. J. Szabó (a1)...


The increase of contact between natural and rural areas is prominent in Brazil, due to agricultural activities and concern with the environmental conservation. In this context, domestic animals, wild fauna and humans are exposed to mutual exchange of parasites, microorganisms and diseases. We studied tick parasitism of wild carnivores and domestic dogs, and the environmental of questing ticks, in extensive cattle ranch areas intermingled with natural vegetation, and in a natural reserve, both in a region of Cerrado biome, Midwestern Brazil. From 2008 to 2015, we inspected 119 wild carnivores from nine species, and collected six tick species (Amblyomma sculptum, Amblyomma ovale, Amblyomma dubitatum, Amblyomma tigrinum, Dermacentor nitens and Rhipicephalus microplus). The most numerous and infested hosts were Cerdocyon thous, Lycalopex vetulus, Chrysocyon brachyurus, Puma concolor and Conepatus amazonicus. From 139 domestic dogs, we collected A. sculptum, Rhipicephalus sanguineus and R. microplus. From vegetation, samplings resulted in A. sculptum, A. dubitatum, A. ovale, Amblyomma rotundatum and R. microplus, with dominance of A. sculptum. Domestics and wild animals presented high overlapping of infestations by A. sculptum, a generalist and anthropophilic tick species. This tick is the most important vector of the Brazilian spotted fever, a lethal human disease. This fact elicits attention and requires efforts to monitor the presence of pathogens vectored by ticks circulating in this type of agroecosystem, including in other regions of the Brazil, because the most of the natural vegetation remaining have been increasingly immersed in pastures and agricultural matrix.


Corresponding author

Author for correspondence: V. N. Ramos, E-mail:


Hide All
Aguirre, AA (2009) Wild canids as sentinels of ecological health: a conservation medicine perspective. Parasites and Vectors 2, S1S7.
Alvares, CA, Stape, JL, Sentelhas, PC, Moraes-Gonçalves, JL and Sparovek, G (2013) Koppen's climate classification map for Brazil. Meteorologische Zeitschrift 22, 711728.
Angerami, RN, Resende, MR, Feltrin, AF, Katz, G, Nascimento, EM, Stucchi, RS and Silva, LJ (2006) Brazilian spotted fever: a case series from an endemic area in southeastern Brazil: clinical aspects. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1078, 252254.
Aragão, HDB (1936) Ixodidas brasileiros e de alguns paizes limitrophes. Memórias do Instituto Oswaldo Cruz 31, 759843.
Arzua, M and Brescovit, AD (2006) Métodos de coleta e preservação para identificação. In Barros-Battesti, DM, Arzua, M and Bechara, GH (eds), Carrapatos de importância médico-veterinária da região neotropical: um guia ilustrado para identificação de espécies. São Paulo: Vox/ICTTD-3/Butantan, pp. 183189.
Azevedo, FC, Lemos, FG, Freitas-Junior, MC, Rocha, DG and Azevedo, FCC (2018) Puma activity patterns and temporal overlap with prey in a human-modified landscape at Southeastern Brazil. Journal of Zoology 305, 246255.
Borges, LM and Leite, RC (1993) Aspectos biológicos do Dermacentor nitens (Neumann, 1897) em condições de laboratório. Arquivos Brasileiros de Medicina Veterinária e Zootecnia 45, 585591.
Bush, AO, Lafferty, KD, Lotz, JM, Shostak, AW (1997) Parasitology meets ecology on its own terms: Margolis, et al. Revisited. Journal of Parasitology 83, 575583.
Cançado, PHD, Piranda, EM, Mourão, GM and Faccini, JLH (2008) Spatial distribution and impact of cattle-raising on ticks in the Pantanal region of Brazil by using the CO2 tick trap. Parasitology Research 103, 371.
Curi, NHAC, Araújo, AS, Campos, FS, Lobato, ZIP, Gennari, SM, Marvulo, MFV, Silva, JCR and Talamoni, AS (2010) Wild canids, domestic dogs and their pathogens in Southeast Brazil: disease threats for canid conservation. Biodiversity and Conservation 12, 35133524.
Dalponte, JC (2009) Lycalopex vetulus (Carnivora: Canidae). Mammalian Species 847, 17.
Dantas-Torres, F (2010) Biology and ecology of the brown dog tick, Rhipicephalus sanguineus. Parasites and vectors 3, 26.
Debárbora, VN, Mangold, AJ, Eberhardt, A, Guglielmone, AA and Nava, S (2014) Natural infestation of Hydrochoerus hydrochaeris by Amblyomma dubitatum ticks. Experimental and Applied Acarology 63, 285294.
Fiorello, CV, Robbins, RG, Maffei, L and Wade, SE (2006) Parasites of free-ranging small canids and felids in the Bolivian Chaco. Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine 37, 130135.
Galvão, MAM, Silva, LJD, Nascimento, EMM, Calic, SB, Sousa, RD and Bacellar, F (2005) Rickettsial diseases in Brazil and Portugal: occurrence, distribution and diagnosis. Revista de Saúde Pública 39, 850856.
Guglielmone, AA, Estrada-Peña, A, Mangold, AJ, Barros-Battesti, DM, Labruna, MB, Martins, JR, Venzal, JM and Keirans, JE (2003) Amblyomma aureolatum (Pallas, 1772) and Amblyomma ovale Koch, 1844 (Acari: Ixodidae): hosts, distribution and 16S rDNA sequences. Veterinary Parasitology 113, 273288.
Hoogstraal, H and Aeschlimann, A (1982) Tick host specificity. Bulletin de la Société Entomologique Suisse 55, 532.
Jácomo, ATA, Silveira, L and Diniz-Filho, JAF (2004) Niche separation between the maned wolf (Chrysocyon brachyurus), the crab-eating fox (Dusicyon thous) and the hoary fox (Dusicyon vetulus) in central Brazil. Journal of Zoology 262, 99106.
Labruna, MB, Kerber, CE, Ferreira, F, Faccini, JLH, De Waal, DT and Gennari, SM (2001) Risk factors to tick infestations and their occurrence on horses in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Veterinary Parasitology 97, 114.
Labruna, MB, Kasai, N, Ferreira, F, Faccini, JL and Gennari, SM (2002) Seasonal dynamics of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) on horses in the state of São Paulo, Brazil. Veterinary Parasitology 105, 6577.
Labruna, MB, Jorge, RS, Sana, DA, Jácomo, AT, Kashivakura, CK, Furtado, MM, Ferro, C, Perez, SA, Silveira, L, Santos, TS, Marques, SR, Morato, RG, Nava, A, Adania, CH, Teixeira, RH, Gomes, AA, Conforti, VA, Azevedo, FC, Prada, CS, Silva, JC, Batista, AF, Marvulo, MF, Morato, RL, Alho, CJ, Pinter, A, Ferreira, PM, Ferreira, F and Barros-Battesti, DM (2005a) Ticks (Acari: Ixodida) on wild carnivores in Brazil. Experimental and Acarology 36, 149163.
Labruna, MB, Camargo, LMA, Terrassini, FA, Ferreira, F, Schumaker, TT and Camargo, EP (2005 b) Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) from the state of Rondônia, western Amazon, Brazil. Systematic and Applied Acarology 10, 1732.
Labruna, MB, Terassini, FA and Camargo, LMA (2009) Notes on population dynamics of Amblyomma ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) in Brazil. Journal of Parasitology 95, 10161018.
Lemos, FG, Facure, KG, Azevedo, FC, Rosalino, LM and Gheler-Costa, C (2011) A first approach to the comparative ecology of the hoary fox and the crab-eating fox in a fragmented human altered landscape in the Cerrado Biome at Central Brazil. In Rosalino, LM and Gheler-Costa, C (eds), Middle-sized Carnivores in Agricultural Landscapes. New York: Nova Sciences Publishers, pp. 143160.
Lemos, FG, de Azevedo, FC, de Mello Beisiegel, B, Jorge, RPS, de Paula, RC, Rodrigues, FHG and de Almeida Rodrigues, L (2013) Avaliação do risco de extinção da Raposa-do-Campo Lycalopex vetulus (Lund, 1842) no Brasil. Biodiversidade Brasileira 1, 160171.
Lopes, SF, Schiavini, I, Oliveira, AP and Vale, VS (2012) An ecological comparison of floristic composition in seasonal semideciduous forest in Southeast Brazil: implications for conservation. International Journal 2012, 114. doi: 10.1155/2012/537269.
Martins, TF, Onofrio, VC, Barros-Battesti, DM and Labruna, MB (2010) Nymphs of the genus Amblyomma (Acari: Ixodidae) of Brazil: descriptions, redescriptions, and identification key. Ticks and Tick-Borne Diseases 1, 7599.
Martins, TF, Arrais, RC, Rocha, FL, Santos, JP, May, JA and Azevedo, FC (2015) Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) on wild mammals in the Serra da Canastra National Park and surrounding areas, Minas Gerais, Brazil. Ciência Rural 45, 288291.
Martins, TF, Barbieri, AR, Costa, FB, Terassini, FA, Camargo, LM, Peterka, CR, Pacheco, RC, Dias, RA, Nunes, PH, Marcili, A, Scofield, A, Campos, AK, Horta, MC, Guilloux, AG, Benatti, HR, Ramirez, DG, Barros-Battesti, DM and Labruna, MB (2016) Geographical distribution of Amblyomma cajennense (sensu lato) ticks (Parasitiformes: Ixodidae) in Brazil, with description of the nymph of A. cajennense (Sensu stricto). Parasites and Vectors 9, 186.
Nava, S, Venzal, JM, Labruna, MB, Mastropaolo, M, González, EM, Mangold, AJ and Guglielmone, AA (2010) Hosts, distribution and genetic divergence (16S rDNA) of Amblyomma dubitatum (Acari: Ixodidae). Experimental and Applied Acarology 51, 335351.
Nava, S, Beati, L, Labruna, MB, Cáceres, AG, Mangold, AJ and Guglielmone, AA (2014) Reassessment of the taxonomic status of Amblyomma cajennense (Fabricius, 1787) with the description of three new species, Amblyomma tonelliae n. sp., Amblyomma interandinum n. sp. and Amblyomma patinoi n. sp., and reinstatement of Amblyomma mixtum Koch, 1844 and Amblyomma sculptumberlese, 1888 (Ixodida: Ixodidae). Ticks and Tick-Borne Diseases 5, 252276.
Oliveira-Filho, AT and Ratter, JA (2002) Vegetation physiognomies and woody flora of the cerrado biome. In Marquis, RJ and Oliveira, OS (eds), The Cerrados of Brazil: Ecology and Natural History of a Neotropical Savanna. New York, NY: Columbia University Press, pp. 91120.
Oliveira, PR, Borges, LMF, Lopes, CML and Leite, RC (2000) Population dynamics of the free-living stages of Amblyomma cajennense (Fabricius, 1787) (Acari: Ixodidae) on pastures of Pedro Leopoldo, Minas Gerais State, Brazil. Veterinary Parasitology 92, 295301.
Onofrio, VC, Labruna, MB, Pinter, A, Giacomin, FG and Barros-Battesti, DM (2006) Comentários e chaves para as espécies do gênero amblyomma. In Barros-Battesti, DM, Arzua, M and Bechara, GH (eds), Carrapatos de importância médico-veterinária da região neotropical: um guia ilustrado para identificação de espécies. São Paulo: Vox/ICTTD-3/Butantan, pp. 5371.
Pereira, MC, Szabó, MP, Bechara, GH, Matushima, ER, Duarte, JM, Rechav, Y, Fielden, L and Keirans, JE (2000) Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) associated with wild animals in the Pantanal region of Brazil. Journal of Medical Entomology 37, 979983.
Pereira, MC, Labruna, MB, Szabó, MPJ and Klafke, GM (2008) Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) microplus: biologia, controle e resistência, 1st Edn.São Paulo, SP: Medicina Veterinária Press.
Queirogas, VLD, Oliveira, LM, Marques, RL, Oliveira, DSF and Szabó, MPJ (2010) Carrapatos (Acari: Ixodidae) em cães domésticos no Parque Estadual Serra de Caldas Novas, Goiás: considerações epidemiológicas. Biota Neotropica 10, 347349.
Queirogas, VL, Del-Claro, K, Nascimento, ART and Szabó, MPJ (2012) Capybaras and ticks in the urban areas of Uberlândia, Minas Gerais, Brazil: ecological aspects for the epidemiology of tick-borne diseases. Experimental and Applied Acarology 57, 7582.
Ramos, VN, Piovezan, U, Franco, AHA, Rodrigues, VS, Nava, S and Szabó, MPJ (2016) Nellore cattle (Bosindicus) and ticks within the Brazilian Pantanal: ecological relationships. Experimental and Applied Acarology 68, 227240.
Ramos, VN, Osava, CF, Piovezan, U and Szabó, MPJ (2017) Ambush behavior of the tick Amblyomma sculptum (Amblyomma cajennense complex) (Acari: Ixodidae) in the Brazilian Pantanal. Ticks and Tick-Borne Diseases 8, 506510.
Ribeiro, JF and Walter, BMT (2008) As principais fitofisionomias do bioma Cerrado. In Sano, SM, Almeida, SP and Ribeiro, JF (eds), Cerrado: ecologia e flora. Brasília: Embrapa Cerrados, pp. 151212.
Rozsa, L, Reiczigel, J and Majoros, G (2000) Quantifying parasites in samples of hosts. Journal of Parasitology 86, 228232.
Sano, SM and Almeida, SD (1998) Cerrado: ambiente e flora. Brasília: Embrapa.
Shaw, SE, Day, MJ, Birtles, RJ and Breitschwerdt, EB (2001) Tick-borne infectious diseases of dogs. Trends in parasitology 17, 7480.
Silva, BSF, Terassini, FA, Coragem, JT, Camargo, LMA and Labruna, MB (2008) Observação e caracterização da altura de carrapatos em arbustos do Parque Natural Municipal de Porto Velho, Amazônia Ocidental-RO. Saber Científico 1, 118131.
Souza, SSALD, Souza, CED, Rodrigues-Neto, EJ and Prado, APD (2006) Seasonal dynamics of ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) in an endemic area for spotted fever in the Campinas region, state of São Paulo, Brazil. Ciência Rural 36, 887891.
Szabó, MPJ, Cunha, TM, Pinter, A and Vicentini, F (2001) Ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) associated with domestic dogs in Franca region, São Paulo, Brazil. Experimental and Applied Acarology 25, 909916.
Szabó, MPJ, Labruna, MB, Garcia, MV, Pinter, A, Castagnolli, KC, Pacheco, RC, Castro, MB, Veronez, VA, Magalhães, GM, Vogliotti, A and Duarte, JMB (2009) Ecological aspects of the free-living ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) on animal trails within Atlantic rainforest in south-eastern Brazil. Annals of Tropical Medicine & Parasitology 103(1), 5772. doi: 10.1179/136485909X384956
Szabó, MPJ, Martins, MMO and Santos, ALQ (2007a) Tick fauna from two locations in the Brazilian savannah. Experimental and Applied Acarology 43, 7384.
Szabó, MPJ, Nieri-Bastos, FA, Spolidorio, MG, Martins, TF, Barbieri, AM and Labruna, MB (2013) In vitro isolation from Amblyomma ovale (Acari: Ixodidae) and ecological aspects of the Atlantic rainforest Rickettsia, the causative agent of a novel spotted fever rickettsiosis in Brazil. Parasitology 140(6), 719728. doi: 10.1017/S0031182012002065
Szabó, MPJ, Castro, MB, Ramos, HGC, Garcia, MV, Castagnolli, KC, Pinter, A, Veronez, VA, Magalhães, GM, Duarte, JM and Labruna, MB (2007b) Species diversity and seasonality of free-living ticks (Acari: Ixodidae) in the natural habitat of wild Marsh deer (Blastocerus dichotomus) in Southeastern Brazil. Veterinary Parasitology 143, 147154.
Veronez, VA, Freitas, BZ, Olegário, MMM, Carvalho, WM, Pascoli, GV, Thorga, K, Garcia, MV and Szabó, MP (2010) Ticks (acari: ixodidae) within various phytophysiognomies of a cerrado reserve in Uberlândia, Minas Gerais. Brazil. Experimental and Applied Acarology 50, 169179.
Woodroffe, R, Cleaveland, S, Courtenay, O, Laurenson, MK and Artois, A (2004) Infectious disease. In Macdonald DW and Sillero-Zubiri C (eds), The Biology and Conservation of Wild Canids. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, pp. 123142
Zar, JH (1999) Biostatistical Analysis, 4th Edn.New Jersey: Prentice Hall.
Zeimes, CB, Olsson, GE, Hjertqvist, M and Vanwambeke, SO (2014) Shaping zoonosis risk: landscape ecology vs landscape attractiveness for people, the case of tick-borne encephalitis in Sweden. Parasites and Vectors 7, 370.


Wild carnivores, domestic dogs and ticks: shared parasitism in the Brazilian Cerrado

  • V. N. Ramos (a1), F. G. Lemos (a2), F. C. Azevedo (a2), R. C. Arrais (a3), C. F. M. Lima (a4), I. Z. Candeias (a5), M. M. Martins (a1), A. C. L. G. Sandrin (a1), S. M. Siqueira (a1) and M. P. J. Szabó (a1)...


Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed.