Every year as it becomes warmer and the winter comes to a close, a new problem emerges: ticks. While previously a manageable problem, the tick population in Upstate New York, especially Rochester, has skyrocketed over the last few years. This has led to a spread in Lyme disease and other pathogens that ticks transmit. While it is a serious problem, there are plenty of precautions that you can take to protect you and your family.

Ticks are arachnids, belonging to the same family as spiders. These arachnids feed on blood, specifically of mammals,


by biting and attaching themselves to their victims. Ticks feed on mammals of all sizes: deer, dogs, even humans.

The real danger of these pests comes from the role that they play as disease carriers. Ticks are the primary carriers for a number of diseases, most notably Lyme disease. Lyme disease is a disease that negatively impacts the human nervous system, leading to symptoms from swelling of the joints to degeneration of the nervous system to loss of memory. While Lyme disease is the most well-known disease transmitted by ticks, ticks can also transmit other pathogens such as Anaplasmosis to Babeosis. When you or someone in your family suffers a tick bite, they become at risk for any of these diseases.

There are a number of precautions to be taken that reduce the likelihood of tick bites. Ticks reside most in areas with long and thick grass. Therefore, when entering these areas, make sure to wear pants and shirts with long sleeves to protect your skin. When going outside into any wooded areas, make sure to apply bug spray to you and your loved ones. If you have a tick problem that persists in your own yard, Ted Collins offers customizable Tick Management Programs to keep you and your family safe. For more information, please call us at (585) 381 – 9000.

For more information about ticks and tick prevention, visit Cornell’s Integrated Pest Management website.