[ExI] honor among parasites

Gregory Jones spike66 at att.net
Mon Jun 14 20:26:02 UTC 2010

> Wikipedia says they look for CO2 and octenol--in addition to optical recognition. And ticks may have thin skin--especially when engorged--but it's very tough compared to mammal skin.

OK cool, I can get some octinol, rather I already have it.  It is the active ingredient in a wasp trap.  Carbon dioxide I can easily make, and pump into the bite chamber (bwaaahahahahahaaaa.)  Octinol is a kind of oily substance, so I could paint that on the tick.  You may be right about the tick having tough skin, but it is worth the experiment just to verify.
As for the mosquito relying on optical recognition, ja it will be difficult indeed to disguise a tick as a mammal.  Open to suggestion.
If I can determine that a mosquito will sit on a tick's back and poke and poke with no success, or the mosquito bends her proboscus trying to bite, that makes me want to look at tick skin under the microscope to figure out what makes that tissue impermeable.  If we can figure it out, next we try to manipulate genes to make the stuff in quantity.  If it is really tough and really flexible, as it would need to be for it's evolved application, it might be a really cool new material with which to make tickskin gloves or shoes.  The marketing people may need to come up with a different name for it perhaps.
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