A Questing Tick

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My photographic project this evening was to capture one of the more endearing behaviors (or annoying behaviors, I suppose, for all you haters out there) of hungry ticks. The arachnids crawl to a high point- say, a blade of grass- and wave their legs about hoping to snare a tasty mammal. The habit is called “questing”, and here are a couple of the better shots:

Dermacentor variabilis - American Dog Tick
Dermacentor variabilis - American Dog Tick

update: Rob Higgins & Brian Allan point out that this male tick is questing not for a host per se, but for a host carrying a female tick.


photo details:
Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro lens on a Canon EOS 7D
ISO 200, f/14, 1/250 sec
diffuse overhead strobe

16 thoughts on “A Questing Tick”

    1. hey – the dog tick is bad enough singing Rocky Mountain High and Too-Ra-Lool Fever !!

      No need to rhyme with lyme 😀

  1. Did not know that was called questing. It almost makes me like ticks a little smidgen of an ounce of…a tick. Almost. I like the first one especially; the word that comes strongly to mind: Exultant!

  2. In the second photo the tick is hoping to be transported to Mars, a la John Carter.
    “I can remember spending many an hour in my boyhood, arms resolutely outstretched in an empty field, imploring what I believed to be Mars to transport me there.” — Carl Sagan

  3. Pingback: Recommended Viewing: Questing Ticks by MYRMECOS « TGAW

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