Three isolates of Anaplasma marginale--Virginia (VAM), Illinois (IAM), and Florida (FAM)--were compared for infectivity for Dermacentor andersoni. The isolates were selected, in part, because of a tail-like appendage that has been demonstrated in the VAM and IAM, but not in the FAM. Ticks were exposed to the isolates as nymphs either naturally by feeding on a calf with anaplasmosis or artificially by percutaneous inoculation with infected bovine erythrocytes. They were examined for infectivity after molting to the adult stage by determining their capability to transmit the disease to susceptible calves and by demonstrating colonies in tick gut sections. Only those ticks exposed to the VAM proved to be infected with A marginale; ticks naturally exposed and those artificially infected with this isolate transmitted the disease to susceptible calves. Colonies of A marginale were observed only in gut tissues of ticks naturally infected with VAM. The IAM (appendage present) and FAM (appendage absent) could not be found in ticks exposed by either method, indicating that factors other than the presence of inclusion appendages may be involved in infection of ticks by A marginale.