Survival of Theileria parva-infected adult Rhipicephalus appendiculatus under laboratory and quasi-natural conditions
Young, A. S
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Adult Rhipicephalus appendiculatus Muguga, having high or low intensities of Theileria parva Muguga infection in their salivary glands, were exposed to 20 degrees C and 85% relative humidity in the laboratory or quasi-natural conditions. Survival of the ticks and T. parva infections in their salivary glands was then monitored over a two year period. Ticks, having an average infection level of 2 infected acini per female, survived for up to 70 or 106 weeks after moulting under the laboratory or quasi-natural conditions respectively. Those having an infection level of 26 infected acini per female, survived for a similar duration except that those under quasi-natural conditions survived for a slightly shorter duration (102 weeks). Similarly, T. parva parasites survived for much longer periods under quasi-natural conditions than under the laboratory conditions. They survived for up to 38 or 78 weeks post salivary gland infection under the laboratory or quasi-natural conditions respectively in both categories of infection levels. There was apparently a density dependent relationship in T. parva survival, with a dramatic fall in infection occurring in ticks with high levels of infection between weeks 10 and 18 or weeks 38 and 46 post salivary gland infection in those exposed to laboratory or quasi-natural conditions before levelling off.