21 December 2015

This tick is "questing"

I've known since my childhood that deer ticks position themselves on the tips of blades of grass and wait for passing victims, but I didn't know until last week (hat tip NSTAAF) that there is a speific term for this behavior:
Hard ticks seek hosts by an interesting behavior called "questing." Questing ticks crawl up the stems of grass or perch on the edges of leaves on the ground in a typical posture with the front legs extended, especially in response to a host passing by. Certain biochemicals such as carbon dioxide as well as heat and movement serve as stimuli for questing behavior.
Photo credit via UMaine extension service.


  1. According to Roger Knutson in his book Furtive Fauna....pg.27

    ".....they can wait for months, years, or even decades for the right host to come along. This is called questing behavior."

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  3. Sybil Ann: Please watch your language because children can sometimes be found on this page.


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