The infection rates of Babesia
sporokinetes in engorged Boophilus microplus
were evaluated during a 2-year period in a dairy farm located in an area of enzootic stability. Every 14 days engorged females were collected from calves and from adult animals. Ticks were incubated at 27 ± 0.5°C and 80-90% relative humidity and Babesia
infection rates were determined by microscopic examination of Giemsa-stained hemolymph smears. After 52 collections, 2105 ticks were obtained, from which 982 were collected from calves and 1123 from cows. The total Babesia
infection rate was 10%, however the incidence was higher (p < 0.05) in ticks collected from calves (17.5%) than in those collected from cows (3.6%). Females collected from cows showed the highest infection rates in January, March, and August, and absence of infection in April and May. Ticks feeding on calves were infected throughout the experimental period. The infection rates of engorged females collected from naturally infected calves that were artificially infested with Babesia
-free-larvae of B. microplus
gradually decreased until the calves were four months old. No differences were observed among infection rates of ticks collected from calves maintained under natural conditions.