Amblyomma variegatum is a hard tick that feeds on a number of domesticated animals including cattle, sheep, goats, horses and dogs, as well as humans. The long mouthparts of A. variegatum leave large wounds, and make this tick difficult to remove manually. Its bite is severe and painful, and can result in significant damage to the skin. Secondary infections can cause septic wounds or abscesses, and inflammation on the teats of cows may affect milk production. In some regions, Amblyomma bite wounds may become infested by screwworms. In addition, A. variegatum is a host for a number of microbial pathogens including Ehrlichia ruminantium (formerly Cowdria ruminantium), the agent of heartwater, and Rickettsia africae, the agent of African tick-bite fever, which is an emerging zoonosis in rural sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean.
Iowa State University
Iowa State University Center for Food Security and Public Health, "Amblyomma variegatum" (2009). Center for Food Security and Public Health Technical Factsheets. 3.