First report of exotic ticks (Amblyomma rotundatum) parasitizing invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) on the Island of Hawai‘i

Crystal Kelehear*, Cameron M. Hudson, James W. Mertins, Richard Shine

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Our surveys of 1401 invasive cane toads (Rhinella marina) from the Hawaiian islands of Hawai‘i, O‘ahu, and Maui revealed the presence of an exotic tick, Amblyomma rotundatum. Immature and adult female ticks infested three wild adult toads at a single site in the vicinity of a zoo south of Hilo, Island of Hawai‘i, Hawai‘i, USA. We found no tick-infested toads on O‘ahu or Maui. This tick infests cane toads in their native Neotropical range, but it was excluded from Hawai‘i when the original founder toads were introduced over 80 years ago. The circumstances of our discovery suggest that A. rotundatum was independently and belatedly introduced to Hawai‘i with imported zoo animals, and Hawai‘i now joins Florida as the second U.S. state where this tick is established.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)330-333
Number of pages4
JournalTicks and Tick-borne Diseases
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Amblyomma rotundatum
  • amphibian
  • anuran
  • Bufonidae
  • Ectoparasite
  • Ixodidae


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