Sunday, November 17, 2019

Amblyomma Tick Resurfaces In Saint Lucia

Local officials are expressing concern over the reappearance here of the  Amblyomma Tick, also known as the Tropical Bond Tick.

As a result, they are appealing to farmers to join them in the quest to combat the pest.

Veterinary Officer, Dr. Sharmine Melville-Edwin, has disclosed that the tick has an affinity for cattle as its host species.

Dr. Sharmine Melville-Edwin

She told the Communication Unit of the Ministry of Agriculture that cattle represent the species that the tick will be more attracted to.

“However, if the tick cannot find its host species which is the cattle, it can attack other species of animals like sheep, goat even horses and it can attack other species even dogs as well,” Melville-Edwin disclosed.

The Veterinary Officer explained that many years ago  this country was part of a Caribbean Amblyomma Program (CAP).

She said the programme vigorously attacked the Amblyomma tick in an effort to eradicate it.

“After many years of treatment, many years of ticks surveillance we were able to have this tick under control. We actually gained, what we called provisional free status from the Tropical Bond Tick in 2001, but because we were low on stock of the particular product that we use to treat the tick, there was a resurgence of the tick a few years ago,” the Veterinary Officer recalled.

She said the pest can cause  animals to develop a  harmful skin infection called dermatophilosis which can affect the profit margins of livestock farmers.

Nevertheless, Melville-Edwin noted that dermatophilosis  cannot be spread from animals to humans and vice-versa.

But she explained that because the ministry of agriculture  wants to control the spread of the tick, it is asking persons not to purchase affected animals in order to prevent the spread of the ticks on the island.

According to the Communications Unit of the Ministry of Agriculture, the  Amblyomma tick is easily identifiable.

It observed that the colour of the enamel is predominantly pink to orange, or orange to red, while eyes are always present and may be flat. T


  1. Now you have to pick an area,and make all cow owners treat their animals,then you calculate how many days the eggs take to hatch,four or five days latter,when you estimate all the eggs have hatched you have to treat all the animals again.All animals have to be treated in that area or valley,you have to make this compulsory to all cattle owners.One cow that does not get treated,will reinfest all the area.This work is easy to do on a ranch,were you treat all your animals,and move them to another area,leaving the gracing field empty,were the eggs and ticks on the gound will die,after some days,if they dont find animals or hosts to climb on to and suck the blood of the animals.Not easy to eradicate in St Lucia,were our cattle owners dont like to be told what to do,and refuse to learn.This is my opinion.

  2. We dont dip here in St Lucia,because our cow population is to small.So all products have to be the kind that is absorbed into the blood sistem of the animal,and kills the tic that suckes the blood.Anybody that has or is selling a product of this tipe,should get in touch with the ministry.

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