Ticks & Lyme Disease – information for Birders
Although the occurrence of the numerous diseases (including Lyme) associated with ticks is still fairly rare, their effects if contracted can be very severe. With this in mind the BPQ Field Trip Committee feels we would be remiss if we did not warn our members of this potential threat as most of our field trips do occur in areas that ticks inhabit. In fact, any outdoor area whether in the forest, in fields, or even in your garden or lawn, can hold ticks.
Knowing what ticks look like before and after becoming attached to the skin, as well as ways to help avoid them latching onto our skin in the first place, is obviously an important outdoor skill. While there are many websites dedicated to this issue some are better than others. We recommend the following for a good overview of the subject.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) page on ticks http://www.cdc.gov/ticks/
The Public Health Agency of Canada website http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/id-mi/tickinfo-eng.php
You can also download this PDF version of our previous blog article about ticks from which the above information is summarized.
The University of Rhode Island’s TickEncounter Resource Center has some very useful resources:
Tick Identification Chart: http://www.tickencounter.org/tick_identification/tickid_nonflash