Ticks are arthropods belonging to the class Arachnida together with spiders and scorpions.
There are two families of ticks, hard and soft. All ticks are parasites that suck blood from vertebrates, like birds, reptiles and mammals, including humans.
The hard ticks Ixodes, vectors of Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Ehrlichia, Babesia and lots of other diseases, is the most common tick in the tempered parts of the world. The infection is transmitted from the host‘s blood to the tick, but can also be transmitted between male and female ticks and the different stages of tick development.
During its life cycle, the tick undergoes different stages of development. After hatching from the egg, the larvae further molts to a nymph and finally ends as adult. During each stage the tick needs to get nutrition from blood.
There are approximately 880 species of ticks spread over the tempered zones of the world. Ticks have been on earth for as many as 250 million years. They like warm areas with high humidity. Usually they sit on stalk of grass waving its claw supplied front legs in search for a passing host.
The most common tick (Ixodes.ricinus) has no eyes instead it uses its sensory organs to detect an approaching victim.