20 Facts about Ticks!

  1. Although commonly referred to as insects, ticks are technically arachnids.
  2. Ticks are classified as parasites since they all feed on the blood of host animals.
  3. Tick species number in the hundreds, but only a handful typically transmits disease to humans.
  4. The ticks of greatest concern in the US are the blackegged tick (also known as the deer tick in the eastern US), the Lone Star tick, and the dog tick.
  5. Ticks do not jump or fly. Typically, they transfer to hosts by waiting on tall grass and crawling aboard when a mammal happens by.
  6. Ticks can be active when the ground temperature is above 45 degrees Farenheit.
  7. TicksTicks that endanger humans also choose deer hosts and are usually prevalent wherever deer are found.
  8. Tick bites often go undetected because they do not hurt or itch.
  9. Ticks that enter your home can live there for extended periods.
  10. There are two families of ticks: hard ticks (Ixodidae) and soft ticks (Argasidae).
  11. Hard ticks have three distinct life stages: larva, nymph and adult.
  12. Soft ticks may go through a number of nymph stages before reaching adult status.
  13. Tick larvae are not believed to carry pathogens. The pathogens are received from the host when the larvae take their first blood meal. They will not feed again until nymph stage.
  14. The nymph stage is believed to be most responsible for infecting humans as nymphs are small and can more easily go undetected on the skin.
  15. An adult tick can wait for months to more than a year to find a suitable host before grabbing hold and feeding.
  16. Adult ticks will feed for several days to more than a week.
  17. Disease transmission  does not occur for an estimated 10-12 hours after feeding begins.
  18. They have tremendous reproduction potential and can lay several thousand eggs.
  19. To remove feeding ticks dab them with alcohol, first.  If this does not work, take tweezers, grasp the tick at the skin level and pull steadily until it is removed.   If any mouth parts are left in the skin, they will not be able to transmit the disease, the the wound should be treated with an antiseptic to prevent secondary infection.
  20. Cats do not appear to be at risk for Lyme.

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