The Black Legged Tick is the most popular tick species established in Garrett County. This tick is known to carry pathogens that cause Lyme Disease, Anaplasmosis, and Babesiosis. Black Legged Ticks have a four-staged life cycle, growing from an egg, to larvae, to nymph, to an adult. If you have encountered a tick over the last couple months, it was most likely an adult as they are most active in the spring and late fall. As we move into summer, the number of adults will decrease and ticks in the nymph life stage will become more prevalent. Shown in the picture from left to right are an adult female, an adult male and a nymph compared to a U.S. dime. Adult ticks are small, but nymphs are even smaller. Therefore, nymphs are more likely to transmit diseases because they can go unnoticed for longer periods of time. When spending time outdoors, make it a priority to use CDC approved tick repellant, shower soon after coming inside and complete a thorough self-check. Remember to properly treat pets as well to prevent ticks from hitching a ride into your home. If you find a tick, you may submit it to the Garrett County Health Department for species identification and to be used in surveillance data collection.
Community news submitted by the Garrett County Health Department’s Environmental Health Services Unit.
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