The Year of the Tick.
A tick(ing) time bomb is set to explode this season, in fields, forests and yards across the country, as we head into what is expected to be an extremely heavy tick season. And with ticks, come the dangers of tick-borne disease, namely Lyme disease.
Health and insect experts are calling it a perfect storm of conditions coming together to create a tick population explosion – lack of acorns and the mild winter. Specifically, the mild winter has allowed ticks, much like other insects to thrive and emerge earlier than usual. As for the acorns, oak trees produced an extremely large acorn crop in 2010, which led to a boom in the white-footed mouse population last year.
As a result, the blacklegged (deer) tick population also increased because ticks had an abundance of mice to feed on when they hatched. However, this spring those same ticks will be looking for their next blood meal and since mice will be in short-supply, the ticks will turn to the next best thing – humans!MSI Bulletin Ticks Diseases May 2018 (002)