East Coast fever appeared in southern Africa in 1902, after the importation of cattle from East Africa, and spread throughout the range of Rhipicephalus appendiculatus until it reached the southern limit of distribution of this tick in 1916. It was progressively eradicated by quarantine, destocking, slaughter and frequent dipping in arsenic. The last case occurred in Swaziland in 1960. A computer based system for matching climates and ecology (CLIMEX) revealed a direct correlation between the climatic favorability of different areas for the tick and the time required to eradicate the disease.
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