Argas hermanni infestation of the little owl (Athene noctua): first record in Iran
Paper ID : 1128-IPCA4 (R1)
Mahdi Salimi1, Asadollah Hosseini-Chegeni *2
1Department of Environmental Protection
2Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, Lorestan University, Khorramabbad, Iran
Introduction: There is not much known about tick fauna of wild birds in Iran. The little owl (Athene noctua) is a member of Athene (= Strix) genus (Aves: Strigiformes: Strigidae) that inhabits much of the temperate and warmer parts of Europe to Russia, northern Africa to Middle East, Near and Far East. We report herein for the first time tick infestation of the little owl, Athene noctua in western Iran. Materials and methods: In 18 May 2021, a total of 25 tick specimens were collected from an individual adult little owl captured in the suburbs of Vanai village, Oshtorinan District, Borujerd County, Lorestan Province. Ticks were observed in all part of the body with highest density in neck and wings areas. Ticks were identified according to morphological characters. Furthermore, for specific identification, a fragment (ca. 728-bp) of cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 gene (COI) was amplified by PCR. Nucleotide sequence of COI product was analyzed with BLASTn in GenBank. Results: All immature tick specimen were identified as hexapod engorged larvae of ticks belongs to Argasidae based on subterminal capitulum and the genus Argas according to the lateral suture. BLASTn search revealed an identity of ca. 99% between our specimens with Argas hermanni Audouin, 1827. A COI sequence of tick specimen was submitted to GenBank under the assigned accession numbers ON090294. Discussion: Our results confirmed the presence of Ar. hermanni on At. noctua representing the first tick infestation record of the little owl in Iran. The results reveal more detail of tick host range variety among wildlife animals of Iran.
Argas hermanni, Wildlife, Identification, COI, Iran, New record
Status : Abstract Accepted (Poster Presentation)