Development of the rickettsia, Anaplasma marginale, in salivary glands of male Dermacentor andersoni exposed as nymphs or adult ticks, was studied indirectly by inoculation of susceptible calves with homogenates and directly by examination, using light microscopy and a DNA probe; some unfed ticks were incubated before tissues were collected. Salivary gland homogenates made from ticks in every treatment group caused anaplasmosis when injected into susceptible calves; prepatent periods decreased as the time that ticks had fed increased. Colonies of A marginale were seen only in salivary glands of ticks exposed as adults and not in those exposed as nymphs; the percentage of salivary gland acini infected in these ticks increased linearly with feeding time. However, the probe detected A marginale DNA in salivary glands of ticks from both groups; the amount of DNA detected increased as feeding time was extended. The amount of A marginale DNA appeared to remain constant in gut tissues, but to increase in salivary glands. Salivary glands of adult-infected male ticks that were incubated, but did not feed a second time, became infected with A marginale, and the pattern of infection of acini varied with incubation temperature. Development of A marginale in salivary glands appears to be coordinated with the tick feeding cycle; highest infection rate was observed in ticks exposed as adults.