Green Wave Forum

Tick Alert!

Options: Green Wave Forum News, Other, Login to Post 

Schessl | Green Wave Forum
Published Tuesday, January 29, 2008

These Bloodsuckers are Everywhere

Dog Tick
Ticks - you know them as the nasty little blood feeding arachnids that crawl on your skin, leave an ugly bite and sometimes a potentially debilitating illness such as Lyme Disease or Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. I don't like them either, so here's a Green Wave Forum article to help you avoid the bloodsuckers.

Modus Operandi

Ticks can usually be found in grassy or wooded areas or around other vegetation. They have eight legs and are closely related to spiders. Ticks come in sizes from almost microscopic to several millimeters in length and are at times difficult to spot on a person or animal. At the nymph (juvenile) and adult stages, ticks hang out on brushy or grassy vegetation and wait to crawl on passing humans and other animals.

Paddlers should be on the lookout for ticks anytime they come in contact with plants. Brushing up against a strainer in a creek or palmetto at the launch site can put you in contact with these little devils.

Lyme Disease

According to the Center for Disease Control, Lyme disease is transmitted to humans by the bite of infected tick. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue and a skin rash. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart, and the nervous system causing all kinds of nasty probems. The incubation period to the onset of symptoms is usually 1-2 weeks, but can be a few days or several months, depending upon the individual. Fortunately, most cases of Lyme disease can be treated successfully with a few weeks of antibiotics and early detection is key.

How to stay Ticked off

Here are some tips from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. I've added my comments in bold after each item.

  • Don't walk barelegged in tall grass, woods or dunes. Walk the center of trails and cleared areas to minimize brushing against vegetation. (EASY, KEEP OFF THE DUNES ANYWAY)
  • Wear a long-sleeved shirt buttoned at the cuff and tucked into pants. Additionally tuck pants into high socks. (NOT PRACTICAL FOR MOST PADDLERS - SOCKS?)
  • Light colors will help you see the ticks more easily. (EASY)
  • Apply insect repellent according to directions. Preferably use one with 30% DEET content. Apply to shoes, socks, pants and not directly on your skin. (EASY)
  • Check yourself and companion regularly and remove any ticks. Body and hair. It usually takes several hours before a tick actually bites. (EASY AND FUN, ASSUMING YOUR COMPANION IS OF THE CORRECT GENDER)
So there you have it. Some simple precautions to reduce the likelihood of a tick bite.

Want to contribute to this article? Leave a comment!

Last update Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Related Articles

Green Wave Forum Logos (12/9/2009)
Manatee Viewing Do's and Don'ts (10/31/2009)
Florida Wildlife Viewing (8/11/2009)
Welcome Lynette Foster - Southeast Expert (8/11/2009)
Kayak and Canoe Bumper Stickers (8/3/2009)
The Importance of Woody Material in NW Florida (8/3/2009)
Lightning Hit My Kayak! (5/30/2009)
You might be a paddler | kayaker | canoeist if... (2/7/2009)
Welcome Greg Pack - NW FLA Expert (1/18/2009)
Proposed Rodman Pool Marina (1/9/2009)

Cmt Tick Alert!Login to Post   
You are in the public comment zone. What follows is not from Green Wave Forum; it comes from other people and we don't vouch for it.

   No comments so far.