Cattle Tick


A blood sucking external parasite Haemaphysalis longicornis which favours cattle but they are not completely host specific and can infest deer, sheep, goats, humans, horses, rabbits, hares and domestic pets.

There are many different species of tick in the world, but H longicornis, is the only one found in New Zealand. It is called a three host tick, with each of its growing stages- larvae, nymph, and adult feeding off separate hosts, not necessarily of the same species.

The adult female tick, which when fully engorged with blood can grow to approximately 9mm long by 7mm wide, lays hundreds of eggs from which the larvae will hatch on nearby vegetation. The larvae attach to a suitable host and feed before falling to the pasture where they develop to a nymph stage. Nymphs will also attach to a host to feed before detaching and developing into an adult. The time taken for the completion of the life cycle varies considerably from days to months depending on factors such as temperature and the host’s immunity developed from previous exposure.

The larvae and nymphal stages of the life cycle position themselves at the tips of long grass or vegetation and attach to the skin of grazing animals or hosts walking through the paddocks.

Ticks are obvious on clinical observation. Ticks are commonly found on the head, ears and lower body extremities.

The Impact

Ticks cause damage to hides and loss of production, anaemia and death when they are present in large numbers.

  • Ticks feed by puncturing the skin of a host with their mouthparts. These puncture sites and any damage that may result can reduce the quality and value of velvet antler during growth in the spring can be a problem in some years.
  • Nymph (larval) ticks can be a major problem on newborn fawns, and young grazing lambs prior to weaning causing anaemia with deaths from blood loss in severe cases.

Management & Control

There is a range of shower and spray treatments available for cattle and sheep. There is also a pour-on product registered for cattle and deer and an insecticide impregnated ear tag available for use in deer.

Ticks are practically impossible to eradicate but there are a few methods to reduce tick infestation of animals from pasture.

Contact your nearest VetEnt clinic to learn more about how to manage in your cattle tick on your property.

cattle ticks on deer
cattle tick  nymphs   cattle ticks engorged adults


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Whether you have had your dog for ages or just adopted a kitten, our pet vets are at hand. From routine check-ups, fun flea facts and info on vaccination to emergencies – your local VetEnt vet clinic is available 24/7. Find out how to keep your pet in top health with a range of pet services.

Sheep + Beef

Your cattle and sheep deserve only the best, most innovative vet services. Discover VetEnt’s automated annual health planners and best-practice benchmarking! Drench testing, liver biopsies, scanning and ill-thrift investigations – you name it, our vets can do it. Of course we’re also at hand to check common symptoms.

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Our dairy vets are experts when it comes to biopsies, scanning and ill-thrift investigations. VetEnt also offers innovative vet programmes, such as performance tracking software and condition monitoring of heifer grazing off-farm. Use our mastitis control programme to improve bulk milk somatic cell count by 30%!

Seasonal Tips - Winter

Sheep & Beef Farmers



  • Remember that breeding bulls need an annual booster of their BVD vaccine.
  • Ensure you book in a grass staggers assessment for your herd, contact your local clinic to arrange this.
  • Watch your young stock for any sign of worms.
  • Have you checked that your drench works? Talk to your local vet about setting up a drench test for the summer.
  • Get your docking fax back form to your local clinic.



Dairy Farmers


  • Tail paint your herd 35 days pre mating, so you can see who is cycling and who isn’t. This allows for early intervention for non-cycling cows.
  • Start thinking about metrichecking your herd pre mating. Dirty cows can have a huge impact on in calf rates and empty rates. We can start doing this now to get the greatest benefits.
  • Are your cows on track to meet their body condition score target for mating? Our vets can help with body condition scoring prior to mating.
  • Pre mating trace element testing needs to be on your radar to make sure the cows are in tip top shape for mating.
  • Make sure you come and see us to book in your herd for BTM BVD testing this season.



Pet Owners

Spring time brings the influx of fleas in our homes and gardens. Eggs that may have been dormant over the winter months start to hatch and fleas multiply. Make sure you have all the furry members of your family covered for fleas with a trustworthy, easy to apply product. For pets who don’t appreciate topical preparations- there are tablet preparations that offer excellent flea control too.

Spring is time when cats start fighting and hormones are flying- make sure your pet is neutered so you don't end up with unwanted kittens or diseases such as FIV which is transferred in cat fights. If your cat does end up in a cat flight- make sure you get them into your closest VetEnt clinic quickly to prevent the bite abscessing from infection.

The change of season is an ideal time to remind us to worm our pets. Adult dogs and cats should be wormed routinely every 3 months. Unfortunately, not all worming products are created equally. We urge you to use a veterinary endorsed product for maximum effectiveness against internal parasites- some of which can infect humans!


VetEnt offers great career opportunities and development to all our staff and is a proud supporter of diversity and equality. We place great importance on recruitment policies, training and development programs whilst fostering a supportive culture to ensure that all employees enjoy the opportunity to succeed.


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