Shaun J. Dergousoff, PhD

Research Scientist

Researching the biology and ecology of arthropods that are livestock pests and vectors of livestock pathogens.

Current research and/or projects

  • Tick distributions, sampling and surveillance
  • Identification of hosts of mosquitoes in Alberta
  • Detection and identification of immature stages of biting midges

Research and/or project statements

Arthropods (such as ticks, mosquitoes, biting midges, and horn flies) cause direct injury or transmit pathogens, affecting the health and welfare of livestock. This can reduce the competitiveness of different sectors, such as beef and dairy cattle and sheep, through production losses and trade barriers. Addressing endemic and emerging arthropod-borne threats to livestock production requires accurate risk assessments and the development of effective mitigation and control strategies. These strategies must be based on an understanding of the biological and environmental factors that affect direct injuries and the transmission of pathogens.
Our research focusses on biological and ecological features to better understand the interaction between the arthropod and the environment, and its vertebrate hosts to address endemic and emerging arthropod-based threats to livestock health and production due to direct effects of blood-feeding and pathogen transmission. Current studies are examining biological and environmental factors that determine the distribution and abundance of ticks, occurrence of tick paralysis in livestock, and the host range of mosquitoes and midges. We are also interested in developing tools that accurately detect and identify the water-associated stages of biting midges. The overall goal of this research is to inform risk assessments and aid the development of effective mitigation and control strategies to prevent or reduce animal health issues and livestock production losses.
 

Professional activities / interests

  • Livestock pests
  • Ticks
  • Mosquitoes
  • Biting midges
  • Tick paralysis
  • Molecular detection and identification of arthropod species

Education and awards

PhD, Biology (vector ecology), University of Saskatchewan (2011)

BSc (Honours), Microbiology, University of Saskatchewan, (1997)

Key publications

  1. Lysyk, T. J., Rochon, K., and Dergousoff, S. J. (2020) “Oviposition patterns of Dermacentor andersoni (Acari: Ixodidae) in relation to the northern limits of its geographic distribution”. Entomological Society of America annual meeting, online conference; November 16-19, 2020 (invited oral presentation).

    2020 - View publication details

  2. Neil B. Chilton, Shaun J. Dergousoff, Veronica Brzezowska, Chantel N. Trost, and Diana R. Dunlop "American Dog Ticks (Dermacentor variabilis) as Biological Indicators of an Association between the Enteric Bacterium Moellerella wisconsensis and Striped Skunks (Mephitis mephitis) in Southwestern Manitoba, Canada," Journal of Wildlife Diseases 56(4), 918-921, (8 October 2020). https://doi.org/10.7589/2019-09-224

    2020 - View publication details

  3. Diyes, C. P., Dergousoff, S. J., Chilton, N. B. (2019) “Reproductive capabilities and larval survival of American dog tick in Saskatchewan”. Graduate Student Symposium, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK; April 9, 2019 (oral presentation).

    2019 - View publication details

  4. Joel Hutcheson, H., Robbin Lindsay, L., Dergousoff, S.J. (2019). Haemaphysalis longicornis: a tick of considerable importance, now established in North America, 110(1), 118-119. http://dx.doi.org/10.17269/s41997-018-0152-4

    2019 - View publication details

  5. Chilton, N.B., Dergousoff, S.J., Lysyk, T.J. (2018). Prevalence of Anaplasma bovis in Canadian populations of the Rocky Mountain wood tick, Dermacentor andersoni, 9(6), 1528-1531. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ttbdis.2018.07.003

    2018 - View publication details

  6. Dergousoff, S.J., Lysyk, T.J., Kutz, S.J., Lejeune, M., Elkin, B.T. (2016). Human-Assisted Dispersal Results in the Northernmost Canadian Record of the American Dog Tick, Dermacentor variabilis (Ixodida: Ixodidae), 126(2), 132-137. http://dx.doi.org/10.3157/021.126.0209

    2016 - View publication details

  7. Lysyk, T.J., Dergousoff, S.J. (2016). Can subclinical infestation by paralyzing dermacentor andersoni (Acari: Ixodidae) induce immunity to tick paralysis in sheep?, 53(3), 496-499. http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/jme/tjv248

    2016 - View publication details

  8. Lysyk, T.J. and Dergousoff, S.J. (2015). "Can subclinical infestation by paralyzing Dermacentor andersoni induce resistance to paralysis in sheep?", Society for Vector Ecology Annual Meeting 2015, Albuquerque, New Mexico, USA.

    2015 - View publication details

  9. Dergousoff, S.J. and Lysyk, T.J. (2015). "Induction of resistance to paralysis in sheep following subclinical exposure to virulent Dermacentor andersoni.", Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting 2015, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.

    2015 - View publication details

  10. Dergousoff, S.J., Lysyk, T.J., Chilton, N., and Rochon, K. (2015). "Geographic distribution and abundance of Dermacentor andersoni and Dermacentor variabilis in Western Canada.", Entomological Society of America Annual Meeting 2015, Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA.

    2015 - View publication details

  11. Dergousoff, S.J. and Chilton, N. (2016). "Ticks on small mammals at two localities in southern Saskatchewan, Canada and the detection of Rickettsia peacockii (Rickettsiaceae) in Dermacentor andersoni (Acari: Ixodidae) nymphs.", The Canadian Entomologist, 148(1), pp. 43-51. doi : 10.4039/tce.2015.39

    2015 - View publication details

  12. Lysyk, T.J., Dergousoff, S.J. (2014). Distribution of Culicoides sonorensis (Diptera: Ceratopogonidae) in Alberta, Canada, 51(3), 560-571. http://dx.doi.org/10.1603/ME13239

    2014 - View publication details

  13. Dergousoff, S.J. and Lysyk, T.J. (2013). "Overwintering survival of two strains of Dermacentor andersoni.", International Congress of Vector Ecology, Palm Springs, California, USA.

    2013 - View publication details

  14. Lysyk, T.J. and Dergousoff, S. (2013). "Variation in vectorial capacity of C. sonorensis for Bluetongue virus in Alberta.", International Congress of Vector Ecology, Palm Springs, California, USA.

    2013 - View publication details

  15. Dergousoff, S., Rochon, K., and Lysyk, T.J. (2012). "Distribution of Dermacentor andersoni in Alberta.", 56th Livestock Insect Workers' Conference, Red Lion Hotel, Kalispell, MT, USA, June 24-27, 2012.

    2012 - View publication details

  16. Dergousoff, S.J., Rochon, K., and Lysyk, T.J. (2012). "Distribution and abundance of Dermacentor andersoni in Alberta, Canada.", 2012 Annual Meeting of the Society of Vector Ecology, St. Augustine, FL, USA, September 23-27, 2012.

    2012 - View publication details

Research facility

5403 1st Avenue South
Lethbridge, AB T1J 4B1
Canada

Affiliations

University of Saskatchewan, Department of Biology (adjunct professor)

University of Calgary (Host-Parasite Interaction group)

University of Manitoba, Department of Entomology (adjunct professor)

Language

English