The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station is reporting the first established population of the Asian longhorned tick in Fairfield County. The state agency is closely monitoring the distribution and human biting activity of this newly discovered invasive tick species, as well as its potential involvement in transmission of exotic and local disease agents.
Asian longhorned ticks are reddish-brown.
They are a three-host tick species as each active life stage feeds on a different host. In temperate populations, each female adult Asian longhorned tick can produce offspring—1,000 to 2,000 eggs at a time—without mating.
The invasive species was initially discovered in the U-U on a farm in New Jersey in 2017, raising public and veterinary health concerns, and has now been found in at least 14 other states. The Asian longhorned tick is native to the Korean Peninsula, Japan, and eastern regions of Russia and China. It's a major livestock pest in Australia and New Zealand, where it was introduced before 1901.
The Tick Testing Program at The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station is a state-supported service offered to State residents since 1990. Ticks are accepted only from residents of Connecticut and should be submitted through their local health departments. Ticks are examined for species, life cycle stage, and engorgement status in addition to pathogen testing.