Shenandoah NP & Rock Creek Park

Two Articles Below...  

My note- Albermarle County, VA covers parts of southern Shenandoah National Park (approx. 15,000 acres) and crosses the mountains toward Waynesboro on the west, North almost to Ruckersville & Gordonsville, South to John Boy Walton's home of Schyler, and East (straddling I-64) towards Lake Monticello. Charlottesville, VA is just about dead-center in the middle of the county.  

ABC 13-

Tick from Asia, that can carry a deadly virus, found on calf at Virginia farm

by Elizabeth Tyree

Wednesday, May 16th 2018

(Photo: New Jersey Department of Agriculture)

ALBERMARLE Co., Va. (WSET) -- The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said the National Veterinary Services Laboratory in Iowa confirmed an exotic tick was found on a cattle farm in Albemarle County.

The Haemaphysalis longicornis tick (otherwise known as the East Asian or Longhorned tick) was on an orphaned calf on a beef farm on May 14.

The Agriculture Department said the ticks are a serious pest to livestock, wildlife, pets, and humans and can spread diseases to humans and animals.

They're particularly dangerous to cattle because they transmit a disease called Theileriosis, which can cause severe anemia or death.

In 2017, VDACS said the ticks were found initially in New Jersey.

No known direct link exists from the Virginia farm to the area in New Jersey where the tick appeared on a sheep farm, they said.

Virginia state veterinary officials said they will work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and other federal and industry partners to determine the extent and significance of this finding.

They ask livestock producers and owners to notify VDACS if they notice any unusual ticks that have not been seen before or if there is a large number of ticks on an individual animal.

Common ticks in Virginia include the American Dog Tick, Lone Star Tick, and Deer Tick.

Ticks can carry diseases that include Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Lyme Disease, and Ehrlichiosis/Anaplasmosis.

Typically, ticks are seen the most in spring and fall, but can persist through all four seasons, especially in warmer weather, VDACS said.

Livestock owners also may contact VDACS’ Office of Veterinary Services at 804.786.2483.

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Shenandoah National Park
Specifically Green County, Virginia
Rock Creek Park- in Maryland near Washington DC
Seven Additional Parks in the mid and upper NE regions (unnamed)

Prevalence and Diversity of Tick-Borne Pathogens in Nymphal Ixodes scapularis (Acari: Ixodidae) in Eastern National Parks

J Med Entomol (2017) 54 (3): 742-751.
27 December 2016
Article history


Tick-borne pathogens transmitted by Ixodes scapularis Say (Acari: Ixodidae), also known as the deer tick or blacklegged tick, are increasing in incidence and geographic distribution in the United States. 

We examined the risk of tick-borne disease exposure in 9 national parks across six Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic States and the District of Columbia in 2014 and 2015. 

To assess the recreational risk to park visitors, we sampled for ticks along frequently used trails and calculated the density of I. scapularis nymphs (DON) and the density of infected nymphs (DIN). 

We determined the nymphal infection prevalence of I. scapularis with a suite of tick-borne pathogens including Borrelia burgdorferiBorrelia miyamotoiAnaplasma phagocytophilum, and Babesia microtiIxodes scapularis nymphs were found in all national park units; DON ranged from 0.40 to 13.73 nymphs per 100 m2

Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, was found at all sites where I. scapularis was documented; DIN with B. burgdorferi ranged from 0.06 to 5.71 nymphs per 100 m2

Borrelia miyamotoi and A. phagocytophilum were documented at 60% and 70% of the parks, respectively, while Ba. microti occurred at just 20% of the parks.

Ixodes scapularis is well established across much of the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic States, and our results are generally consistent with previous studies conducted near the areas we sampled. 

Newly established I. scapularis populations were documented in two locations: Washington, D.C. (Rock Creek Park) and Greene County, Virginia (Shenandoah National Park). 

This research demonstrates the potential risk of tick-borne pathogen exposure in national parks and can be used to educate park visitors about the importance of preventative actions to minimize tick exposure.
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