Parasitism of crocodilians by ticks has rarely been reported, and to our knowledge only seven published accounts exist. On 3 July 1999, we collected four ticks from a subadult Morelet's crocodile (Crocodylus moreletii) captured in northern Belize. These were identified as Amblyomma dissimile (one female), and Am-blyomma sp. (two nymphs, one larva). The crocodile was captured on land approximately 100 m from water, and all four ticks were attached to loose skin on the lateral surface of the tail. Crocodilians are most susceptible to terrestrial ectoparasites, including ticks, during overland movements. However, most such movements occur in response to drought, when tick questing activity is suppressed, which likely accounts for the small numbers of tick specimens recorded from crocodilians and the absence of any noticeable impact of parasitism on host fitness.
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Vol. 37 • No. 4