Deer Ticks and Blacklegged Ticks: One in the Same Tick


TickLDALyme Literacy: From the Desk of the LDA President
There are a number of ticks in the United States that can carry and/or transmit many diseases which people and their pets may get from a tickbite. Often, one tickbite can transmit several different diseases. The ticks most often talked about are the Ixodes scapularis, commonly known as the deer tick or blacklegged tick, and its western cousin, Ixodes pacificus, the western blacklegged tick. Both of these ticks transmit Lyme disease. Below is a list of some of the more common US ticks transmitting diseases with their Latin name and common name(s) and some of the diseases they transmit. View pictures of these ticks on our tick vector photo page.

Ixodes scapularis blacklegged or deer ticks transmit Borrelia burgdorferi, Borrelia mayonii, Borrelia miyamotoi, babesiosis, anaplasmosis, Powassan encephalitis virus, tick paralysis, tularemia, bartonellosis, ehrlichiosis

Ixodes pacificus western blacklegged ticks transmit Borrelia burgdorferi, babesiosis, anaplasmosis, bartonellosis, Borrelia miyamotoi

Amblyomma americanum lone star ticks transmit STARI, HME, Heartland virus, tularemia, tick paralysis, Q fever, bite may cause alpha-gal meat allergy

Dermacentor variabilis American dog ticks transmit RMSF, tularemia, tick paralysis

Dermacentor andersoni Rocky Mt. wood ticks transmit RMSF, tularemia, CO tick fever, tick paralysis, Q fever

Dermacentor occidentalis Pacific Coast ticks transmit Rickettsia phillipi (364D)

Amblyomma maculatum Gulf Coast ticks transmit R. parkeri rickettsiosis

Rhipicephalus sanguineus brown dog tick transmits RMSF in the southwestern US & along US Mexican border (dogs primary host but will bite humans & other mammals—can live inside house for entire life)

Ornithodorus hermsi, ornithodorus turicata, Ornithodorus parkeri (a soft bodied tick) transmit tick-borne relapsing fever caused by Borellia hermsiiBorellia parkerii, or Borellia turicatae