Ticks are significant and harmful blood sucking external parasites of livestock that are distributed throughout the world. A cross-sectional study was conducted from November, 2017 to March, 2018 at Sebeta- Hawas District, Oromia Regional state, Ethiopia to estimate the current prevalence and to determine hard tick species. A total of 384 cross (n=192) and local (n=192) breeds of cattle were selected using stratified random sampling method and examined carefully for tick infestation on their body surface visually. Off these, 204 (53.1%) cattle were observed to be infested with single or multiple genera of hard ticks. A total of 2680 hard ticks were collected from half body region of infested cattle examined using stereomicroscope for the purpose of species identification. Four genera (Amblyomma, Rhipicephalus (Boophilus), Rhipicephalus and Hyalomma) and seven species of hard ticks (Amblyomma. variegatum A.cohaerence, Hyalomma. truncatum, H.rufipes, Rhipicephalus(Boophilus). decoloratus, Rhipicephalus. evertsi eversi, R. Praetextatus) were identified. The most prevalent tick's genera affecting cattle was found to be Rhipicephalus (Boophilus) (53.1%) followed by Amblyomma (42%), Rhipicephalus (35%) while Hyalomma (20.8%) was found to be the least prevalent. The prevalence of tick infestation was statistically non-significant among different age groups (P>0.05), breeds (P>0.05), and agro-ecology (P>0.05). However, body condition and sex had shown a statistically significant association. Poor body conditioned animals had higher prevalence (85%) compared to good conditioned animals. Cattle managed under extensive management system (65.7%) had higher tick infestation rate than semi intensive (53.1%) and intensive (30.7%) management systems. Regarding to sex, male cattle (60%) were highly infested than female cattle (47.4%). The results of this study indicated that economically important hard ticks are widespread throughout the study areas. It is therefore recommended that intensive farming practices be employed to reduce cattle and tick contact and other control strategies also should be designed.
Keywords: Cattle, Hard ticks, Prevalence, Sebeta Hawas, Ethiopia.