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Alphas have the ability to turn human beings into new werewolves, or other werecreatures with a bite or using their claws. The bite is the more effective method of accomplishing this. Less so is a scratch. For one factor, the claws have to go deep, i.e. clawing out someone's throat, but there's still no guarantee. Once the process starts, the human victim will normally transform into a new beta shapeshifter.


However, the process could change the recipient into some other shapeshifter.


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When Jackson Whittemore was bitten by Derek Hale, he instead became a kanima. Likewise, when Peter Hale clawed out Kate Argent's throat in 1x12 - Code Breaker, she transformed then came back to life as a werejaguar.


The transformation requires no act of will by the alpha to take effect. In 2x12 - Master Plan, Gerard Argent impaled his arm on Derek's fangs, and though Derek was forced and unwilling, Gerard still counted as being bitten. Likewise, Peter's sole intention was to murder Kate when he clawed out her throat.


If however, the transformation process does not take, it will eventually kill the victim. Derek's first love, Paige failed to transform, simply because the bite was totally fatal to her instead.


If a banshee is bitten they will neither transform nor die because they are immune. However, a bite can be used to activate the banshee's innate abilities.


Furthermore, because the transformative process changes the body, the bite can be used to exorcise the recipient of a dark kitsune's possession.


The Bite

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The bite, when used as a proper noun in the Teen Wolf universe, refers to a bite from an alpha shapeshifter. This action is the typical method to turn a human into a new werewolf.


The bite has transformed several people. Scott McCall was bitten by Peter Hale in 1x01 - Wolf MoonJackson Whittemore was bitten by Derek Hale in the aftermath of Season 1. During Season 2, Isaac Lahey, Erica Reyes and Vernon Boyd all received the bite from Derek. In 4x03 - Muted, Liam Dunbar was bitten by Scott himself. Hayden Romero was bitten also by Scott in 5x20 - Apotheosis.


Peter Hale bit Lydia Martin, a latent banshee, in 1x11 - Formality. She neither turned or died, because as a banshee, Lydia isn't affected by supernatural forces, she is immune and she can instead access supernatural powers. Peter's true intention was to implant memories of himself in Lydia's subconscious so the devious werewolf could use Lydia as a backup plan to bring himself back to life in the event that he could be killed.


In Gerard Argent's case, because his system was filled with mountain ash, a barrier against supernatural creatures, he did not turn, rejecting the bite completely and he was incapacitated until provided with a cure.


In The Divine Move, Scott bites "Void Stiles", the Nogitsune's carbon copy of Stiles, which depleted his power and vanquished the void kitsune.