Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale...

Posted at 11:43 AM, May 19, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-19 11:43:56-04

Research is showing that these parasites are only getting worse.

Multiple factors are leading to larger hungrier and more dangerous tick populations.

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection which is spread by bites from tiny, infected deer ticks.

Generally, the tick must be attached to an individual for 36 to 48 hours or more before it can spread bacteria.

After spending time outdoors in an area likely to have ticks,such as brushy, woody or grassy places, it is very important that you check yourself, your children and your pets for ticks.

Early stage symptoms (days to weeks) include:

A Red, expanding rash

Occurs in 70% to 80% of infected persons and begins at the tick bite site after 3 to 30 days (average 7 days)

Rash gradually expands over a period of several days, and can reach up to 12 inches across.

Parts of the rash may clear as it enlarges, resulting in a bulls-eye appearance.

Fatigue, chills, fever, headache, muscle and joint aches, and swollen lymph notes.

What can you do to reduce ticks in your yard.

Keep lawns mowed and edges trimmed.

Clear brush, leaf litter and tall grass around the house, and at the edges of gardens and stone walls,

Stack woodpiles neatly away from the house and preferably off the ground.

In the fall, clear all leaf and garden litter, where ticks can live in the winter, out of your yard.

Keep the ground under bird feeders clean so as not attract small animals that can carry ticks into your yard.

Locate children's  swing sets and other play equipment in sunny, dry areas of the yard, away from the woods where ticks can be abundant.

Using an approved insecticide once a year (in June) can significantly reduce tick numbers on a residential property.