Saturday 18 October 2014

Creature 18: Amblyomma americanum

A tick which makes you allergic to meat

Today's creature will redefine your understanding of terror. Amblyomma americanum, commonly called the Lone Star tick, is a tick which is mostly found in the United States.

Like most ticks it injects a toxic saliva when feeding. This venom serves to stop blood coagulating and to stop the host feeling the fact that a little arthropod is burrowing into their flesh. The terrifying consequence of the particular toxin produced by this tick is that it can cause an allergy to meat in humans. I don't know about you but this scares the hell out of me. It has been speculated that other ticks may also produce a similar effect.

The Lone Star tick is normally found in eastern and southern united states across to Texas and Mexico. There are reports of it from the tropics of South America.

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropda
Class: Arachnida
Order: Ixodida
Family: Ixodidae
Genus: Amblyomma
Species: Amblyomma americanum

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