Tick tick boom: ticks take over


TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) Tick, tick boom, no, not quite an explosion but we are talking an uptick of these 8-legged hard-shelled arachnids that can be the size of one delicious fruit.

“These are adult, fully engorged female ticks, they can be the size of blueberries,” said Peter Coppinger, PhD, Associate Professor of Biology at Rose-Hulman.

Now they will cling to you and they’ll cling to your pet and the process is called questing.

“They will grab on with their back legs and then dangle back and rest with their forelegs and then just wait there for a mammal and attach to them then go straight to the ears and back of the head,” explained Coppinger.

Now with ticks sometimes it’s a game of hide and seek.
And unfortunately, not all are as noticeable as these engorged blood crawlers seen in the picture above.
So, how can you spot them and how do you remove them?

“Wear light clothing, or tuck your pants in, if you get one on you the best way to get it off is with tweezers and pull the head straight back,” explained Coppinger.

There’s no questioning ticks have a bad reputation, but local biologist Peter Coppinger says these particular ticks don’t pass the same diseases as their cousin, “no lyme disease is in the deer tick, these do not carry the disease so don’t panic if you find one on you.”

If all of this tick talk has you on edge right now, don’t fret, that’s probably just the nervous tic talking.

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