Ticks (Acari: Ixodoidea) As Urban Pests and Vectors with Special Emphasis on Ticks Outside Their Geographical Range
  Key Words  
  Argasidae, Ixodidae, urbanization, allergic response, vectors, reservoir hosts
  Igor Uspensky
  Silberman Institute of Life Sciences, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel Abstract The development of any urban area has been followed by dramatic changes in floral and faunal biodiversity, which also touches upon vectors of human and animal diseases, and provides strong impacts on wildlife-pathogen interaction. Although the urban environment creates a new reality for animal existence and the urbanization process is followed by impoverishment of biodiversity, new conditions meet tick requirements both in developing and developed countries. Numerous hosts of adult ticks are either preserved in individual properties or specially bred in small farms in suburban areas of many developing countries. In developed countries, environmental protection and ecologically-based standards of the urban growth preserve green spaces inside urban and residential areas together with increasing number of hosts including those which can amplify tick populations. Urbanization has been connected with the sharp increase of urban pet populations, both domesticated and stray, which are excellent hosts for ticks. Pet owners comprise a group of high risk for tick attacks and infection with trick-transmitted diseases. The main task of the review is not in comprehensively cataloguing cases of tick findings in towns but in trying to outline some general dependence of tick survival in urban areas and possible ways of protection from tick attacks and, hence, from the danger of infections with tick-transmitted pathogens in towns.