Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Lyme Carrying Ticks Headed Northward

Black-legged Ticks, formerly called Deer Ticks, found as far north as Sleeping Bear Dunes

Black-legged, or Deer Tick

Black-legged ticks, the primary vector for spreading Lyme Disease were found at Ludington State Park on small mammals as early as 2004. However, at that time, none of this species was found in Manistee at Orchard Beach State Park.

Now, however, the ticks have not only been found in Manisteee, but as far north as Sleeping Bear Dunes.

Sarah Hamer, of Michigan State University, conducts research and monitors the ticks spread. Their research has revealed that not only are the ticks advancing northward, but that there are more ticks per animal checked. Where there once were single ticks on animals, there now are many more with multiple ticks.

Deer and birds are being looked at as vectors for spreading the ticks up the west coast of Michigan. The small mammals do not travel very far, and the ticks by themselves travel very little.

These ticks are very small, and people should check more carefully for them than for the easily seen Wood Ticks or Dog Ticks

from the Ludington Daily News, June 26, 2007
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