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THE ECOLOGY OF TICKS TRANSMITTING ROCKY MOUNTAIN SPOTTED FEVER IN THE EASTERN UNITED STATES.
Final progress rept. 1 Jun 63-31 May 69,
OLD DOMINION UNIV NORFOLK VA
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The report summarizes data obtained on the occurrence of infection in ticks and wild vertebrate hosts collected according to the experimental field design developed and executed over a 4 year period at the Montpelier study area near Richmond, Virginia. It also includes certain new data on the occurrence of Rocky Mountain spotted fever in Virginia, based upon medical analysis case records reported to the Virginia State Health Department and the epidemiological significance of this new data upon the ecological results of our field studies at the Montpelier area and elsewhere. Also included are some reports of laboratory investigations done in support of the field investigations. Infection with Rocky Mountain spotted fever was found in 6 species of ticks native to the Montpelier study area. Dominant in importance was the American dog tick, Dermacentor variabilis, in which the annual incidence of infection varied between 2.9 and 4.4. Infection was highest in adults mean 4.8, lowest in larvae mean 2.3 of this tick. In addition, infection was also recognized in 4 other species of ticks native to the area, but apparently at low incidence. Serological evidence of infection in a number of mammal and birds species provides data for assessing the seasonal associations, vector host interrelationships, and possible means of spread of the zoonosis under natural conditions. Author
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE