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Questing tick abundance in urban and peri-urban parks in the French city of Lyon

Abstract : Background: In Europe, ticks are responsible for the transmission of several pathogens of medical importance, including bacteria of the Borrelia burgdorferi (s.l.) complex, the agents of Lyme borreliosis. In France, the Auvergne Rhône-Alpes region is considered a hot spot for human tick-borne pathogen infections, with an estimated annual rate of 156 cases of Lyme borreliosis per 100,000 inhabitants. Although several studies have assessed the abundance of ticks in rural areas, little consideration has been given thus far to urban green spaces in France. Methods: This study aimed to estimate tick abundance in three parks, two urban (U1, U2) and one peri-urban (PU), in and around the city of Lyon (France). A forest in a rural area was used as a control (C). Tick sampling campaigns were performed in each site in April, May, June, July, and October 2019 using the dragging method. One hundred transects of 10 m 2 each were randomly chosen in each park in places frequented by humans. The sampling sessions were carried out under semi-controlled abiotic conditions. Ticks were stored in 70% ethanol and identified to species and developmental stage under a light microscope using morphological keys. Results: A total of seven ticks (nymphs and adults) were collected in the two urban parks (six in U1 and one in U2), while 499 ticks were sampled in the peri-urban park. Of the 506 ticks collected, 504 were identified as Ixodes ricinus, one as Dermacentor marginatus, and one as Ixodes frontalis. In the peri-urban park, ticks were mainly collected under the forest cover and at forest edges. Tick density under forest cover was 7.1 times higher in the control site than in the peri-urban park throughout the survey period. Conclusions: This study confirmed the presence of ticks in all of the parks surveyed, although their occurrence in the urban parks was very rare compared to the peri-urban park and the control site. These results should serve as a basis for the implementation of preventive measures.
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Submitted on : Thursday, November 19, 2020 - 9:21:05 AM
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Laure Mathews-Martin, Manon Namèche, Gwenaël Vourc'H, Sabrina Gasser, Isabelle Lebert, et al.. Questing tick abundance in urban and peri-urban parks in the French city of Lyon. Parasites & Vectors, 2020, 13, ⟨10.1186/s13071-020-04451-1⟩. ⟨hal-02959694⟩

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