Dog's Ticks Sex Pix

By Josie Glausiusz
Jul 1, 2000 5:00 AMNov 12, 2019 4:40 AM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Connubial bliss for this pair of dog ticks was a complicated affair. The sprawling brown female, bloated from a blood meal, and her wee green mate were extracted from the skin of a Canadian shepherd and captured under an electron microscope by photographer Volker Steger. They are caught in the midst of a series of rarely seen mating maneuvers. Here, the male inserts its mouth parts into the female's sexual opening to sniff out crucial pheromones. Normally, he would then withdraw, disgorge a spermatophore—a bubble full of sperm—and edge it, with the aid of the same mouth parts, into the female’s sexual pore. The female tick then plummets to the ground, lays her eggs, and dies. "This may be the first electron microscope picture of dog ticks mating," Steger says.

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month

Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

1 free articleSubscribe
Discover Magazine Logo
Want more?

Keep reading for as low as $1.99!


Already a subscriber?

Register or Log In

More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

To The Magazine

Save up to 40% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2024 Kalmbach Media Co.