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For the United States & Canada
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Species Dermacentor variabilis - American Dog Tick

Dog Tick - Dermacentor variabilis - male American Dog Tick - Dermacentor variabilis - female Dermacentor variabilis - female 3013523 Tick - Dermacentor variabilis - female Dermacentor variabilis - American Dog Tick - Dermacentor variabilis Dermacentor variabilis - American Dog Tick - Dermacentor variabilis - female Ixodidae - Hard Ticks - Dermacentor variabilis Dermacentor variabilis
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Chelicerata (Chelicerates)
Class Arachnida (Arachnids)
Subclass Acari (Mites and Ticks)
Superorder Parasitiformes
Order Ixodida (Ticks)
Family Ixodidae (Hard Ticks)
Genus Dermacentor
Species variabilis (American Dog Tick)
Other Common Names
Wood Tick
Explanation of Names
Dermacentor variabilis Say, 1821
Adults - 5mm; engorged females can be 12mm(1)
Eastern N.A., but also in some areas along the Pacific Coast (CA and perhaps into OR). Please see this CDC link which also includes approximate range maps for other tick species.
Adults are most abundant in spring and summer in the North and are scarce after August; in the South they occur throughout the year (1)
Gray squirrel, among other mammals

Larvae and nymphs feed mainly on rodents; the adults feed mainly on dogs, horses, hogs, cattle, and many wildlife (1)
Life Cycle
Females lay eggs in various places cute never on the host; the young seek out their host after hatching (1)
Can transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever and tularemia to humans and anaplamosis to cattle (1)
See Also

Gulf Coast Tick - Amblyomma maculatum
Found particularly along the Gulf and South Atlantic coastlines.
Internet References
Featured Creatures - University of Florida
Works Cited
1.Eastern Forest Insects
Whiteford L. Baker. 1972. U.S. Department of Agriculture · Forest Service.