Date of Award

Summer 1993

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences



Committee Director

Daniel E. Sonenshine

Committee Member

Raymond W. Alden, III

Committee Member

Frank E. Scully, Jr.

Call Number for Print

Special Collections LD4331.B46 P753


Two species of bont ticks, Amblyomma hebraeum and Amblyomma variegatum, common to Africa have been studied to compare types and quantities of compounds known or believed to serve as components of the attraction-aggregation-attachment pheromone (AAAP). A complex of attraction, aggregation and attachment pheromones are used by these ticks to detect hosts, mates and perhaps minimize interspecific breeding. Solvent extraction of pheromone emitting ticks followed by Gas Chromatography and Mass Spectrometry revealed little difference in the composition of the AAAP in these two species. However, subtle differences in the relative makeup of the pheromonal blend are noted, suggesting that such differences may facilitate species-specific discrimination during aggregation and attachment. Differences in the relative abundance of benzaldehyde and methyl salicylate in the males of the two species were especially noteworthy. Possible methods by which such differences in phenolic compound composition may affect the behavior of these ticks are discussed.


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