Asian Longhorned Tick Spreading Across Pennsylvania

Image Source: USDA

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Hayes, J.) 12.03.2023, published “Reproductive anomaly enables a tick species to race into Pennsylvania.” The Asian longhorned tick, a parasite from Southeast Asia, is posing a significant threat to livestock, wildlife, and pets across 19 states, including Pennsylvania. This invasive species, known for reproducing asexually, has rapidly spread since its arrival in the United States in 2017 and has been confirmed in numerous Pennsylvania counties and city parks.

Studies from Ohio State University and various departments highlight the tick’s ability to rapidly establish large populations, infesting livestock and causing health issues such as decreased production, slowed growth, and even death. Although it hasn’t been linked to human diseases in the U.S., the tick carries pathogens associated with Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, and babesiosis. There is no evidence of transmission to humans yet.

Prevention methods are crucial, including using approved insect repellents, treating clothing with permethrin, and conducting thorough tick checks after outdoor activities. Farmers are advised to perform regular livestock checks, and the public is urged to watch for signs of these ticks.

For more information:

Read the full article on the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette website here.

Read additional articles on Asian longhorned ticks and Lyme on LDA’s website here.

Read additional information on Lyme and Prevention on LDA’s Lyme & TBD Prevention