In May 2000, a dead porcupine (Erethizon dorsatum Culiver) was found on an infrequently traveled dirt road at Camp Ripley, MN. The presence of late instar Calliphoridae suggested that the porcupine died within the past 4 to 7 d. Adult carrion (Silphidae) and rove (Staphylinidae) beetles were observed under the carcass. In June, a large number of adult American dog ticks, Dermacentor variabilis (Say), were observed questing on the porcupine and the surrounding grass. Six zones were established around the carcass, and each zone was sampled for ticks once a month from June through September. Ticks were captured in June and July, and 93% were captured within 2 m of the carcass. Gases released as part of the decomposition process were believed to attract the ticks to the carcass.
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Vol. 40 • No. 1