Exoskeleton anomalies in taiga tick males from populations of the Asian part of Russia
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Variation of the exoskeleton is described for 2630 males of the taiga tick Ixodes persulcatus Schulze, 1930 collected by flagging from vegetation in the Far Eastern, Siberian, and Ural Federal Districts of Russia. Two types of conscutum anomalies were found to be prevalent in all the samples. Exoskeleton anomalies were less frequently recorded in the Far Eastern Federal District than in the Siberian and Ural Federal Districts: 6.5 ± 1.05, 29.7 ± 1.03, and 25.8 ± 3.93%, respectively. The observed phenotypic variation seems to be unrelated to anthropogenic impact. In the meridional direction, the taiga tick samples with different frequencies of exoskeleton anomalies correspond to two races of the species.
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