The Ticks Are Here...

@Raelove (15181)
Saco, Maine
April 22, 2016 6:56am CST
...and they probably have been for some time now, considering the warm snowless winter we had. Yesterday, the property maintenance grounds crew spent several hours raking, blowing, and scraping this place clean. They walked around with leaf blowers and rakes, mowed up the dead grass thatch, and then vacuumed up all the debris that had been blown into the parking lot. For that reason, we all had to park our cars out on the street, as this whole process created a mini-dust storm. As if that weren't bad enough, it also disturbed the ticks that were most likely hiding in the lawns and side yards that surround these buildings, and one managed to find its way onto my body. There was a lovely moon shining through the trees last night around 9 p.m., so I went out to take photos of it. And of course, not being satisfied to stay on my little concrete deck, I wandered out onto the lawn, and that's where the thing probably hitched a ride with me. I found it early this morning when I was getting dressed for the day and immediately pulled it off. It hadn't firmly embedded itself, so it came off easily, and there was a bit of blood. I applied some rubbing alcohol and then a small bandage to the bite, and I'll keep an eye on it, as I know the symptoms of Lyme disease and will call the doctor right away if I notice any. This is not the first time I've been bitten by ticks. It happened twice before when I lived in the woods years ago. After a long day of clearing brush on the property, one had attached itself to the back of my neck just below the hairline and was there for days till I finally felt it and pulled it off. Then a couple of years later, I was bitten again on my leg. I found this one sooner, though, and was able to pull it off. I've never had any symptoms that I knew of, and I remember mentioning it to my doctor back then who told me not to worry about it. So here's a word to the wise: once tick season kicks in, which here in Maine runs from April to September, stay away from grassy or shrubby areas. If you must wander out, tuck your pants inside your shoes, or spray your legs with something containing DEET, a chemical that repels the ticks. While only deer ticks are said to spread Lyme disease, all tick bites can produce itching and soreness. Living here, I never gave ticks a thought until this morning. I hope it's not a lesson I had to learn the hard way. Only time will tell. (Public Domain Image)
12 people like this
16 responses
• United States
22 Apr 16
Tick season is pretty much year round here. In the 16 years we've lived in the south I have only had one, my husband has had a few and Ruby only had two.
4 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
I hate how they engorge themselves on the blood. I used to check my cats all the time when I lived in the woods, and each of them would have at least several on them each day. Maine is infamous for them, because they breed in huge numbers once the weather warms.
2 people like this
• United States
22 Apr 16
@Raelove When we lived in Jersey we both got Lyme disease shots...we didn't take any chances.
3 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
@AbbyGreenhill You must have gotten the shots before 2002, because they stopped making the vaccine after that. That's what the doctors told my friend, who now has chronic Lyme disease for which there is very little treatment and lots of pain.
2 people like this
@OneOfMany (9188)
• United States
22 Apr 16
I was bitten by 6 last year, though I pulled most of them off within the first hour. This year I have been on a campaign to make the yard a very unfriendly place to them. I have been eliminating the long grass areas from around the barn and leaving rocks only, which will dehydrate and kill them. I'm going to keep the grass short and the tall grass weed eated. The place where I will have to go on full alert is on the hills this weekend. That's where they usually get me. I may have been bitten by 6 last year, but I killed over 50. I don't want to experience a Lyme bite again. That medicine killed my whole summer, it made me so weak.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
The grass is very short here, but the crew stirred it all up, releasing the ticks.
2 people like this
@OneOfMany (9188)
• United States
22 Apr 16
@Raelove Yes, but I won't be stirring the ticks up here, they can stick to the long grass!
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
@OneOfMany Oh believe me, they are in the short grass, too. Just fewer of them. They are everywhere a bug can hide.
2 people like this
@fishtiger58 (30304)
• Momence, Illinois
22 Apr 16
My husband and I camp a lot, and because of that and the many ticks around, we do a tick check each night before we go to bed. Just the thought of ticks gives me the creeps. It's the one thing I hate about camping.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
I hate them, too. You have to be so careful in the spring and summer. They're worse here this year because of our mild winter, so they're appearing sooner than they normally do.
2 people like this
@fishtiger58 (30304)
• Momence, Illinois
22 Apr 16
@Raelove I hope they aren't worse here, we are going camping really soon. I hate to have to think to much about them I start getting the itches.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
@fishtiger58 I totally get that.
2 people like this
@celticeagle (114391)
• Boise, Idaho
22 Apr 16
Good advice. Loved your moon photo. I remember when I was a little tike and we had to go through the tick check when we came home from the mountains or outings. I remember one in particular when I got a tick in my privates. That coal oil being poured there hurt so bad. I was very careful after that. Ouch!
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
They are unpleasant no matter what.
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (114391)
• Boise, Idaho
23 Apr 16
@Raelove ...Yes, and ugly.
1 person likes this
@Inlemay (17333)
• South Africa
22 Apr 16
oh i am scratching my head as I read - he he he - we encounter ticks when a new animal comes to the neighbourhood otherwise I have my cats dusted and pour-on to prevent them bringing them home.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
Good to know!
2 people like this
@PatZAnthony (11729)
• Charlotte, North Carolina
22 Apr 16
They are an issue here too and we have to double check everyone after an adventure outdoors!
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
That's right. And the one time you forget to, it'll be too late. Hate those things.
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Apr 16
A very good reminder to be aware of ticks. We do a daily check on ourselves and the pets
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
@GardenGerty (90274)
• Marion, Kansas
22 Apr 16
As a kid growing up we got ticks when we would visit my grandparent's farm. Fortunately we never got anything from the bites. Or from the mosquitoes that we know of. If I am not mistaken there are a lot more diseases than Lyme and Spotted Fever that you can get from ticks.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
Yes, there are. You're right.
1 person likes this
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
22 Apr 16
The only time in my life I was near ticks was when I was a child and went to camp in Wisconsin. WE donĀ“t have those here.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
You are very lucky.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (97347)
• Bunbury, Australia
22 Apr 16
We have ticks here too although the authorities so far refuse to recognise Lyme disease. We have them in our bush but however quickly you find and remove them it seems you're always left with a welt and a very itchy spot which can last for some weeks.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
Here, the various websites describe a "bull's-eye" rash that follows the bite. I had one once, but it didn't develop into anything further. I've had aches and pains in my joints for years, so I probably wouldn't know the difference anyway! In Maine, the "rainforest" type of environment supports the tick populations: lots of moisture, plenty of places to breed and hide, and warmish summers during which they multiply like crazy.
2 people like this
@Shavkat (44875)
• Philippines
22 Apr 16
It is really a freaking out experience to see ticks crawling on walls. I must give all the ways to terminate them.
2 people like this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
I've never seen them on walls, but I've seen plenty on furniture and a few on me. Can't stand them.
2 people like this
@jstory07 (57277)
• Roseburg, Oregon
22 Apr 16
Years ago I had one tick and pulled it out.
2 people like this
• Davao, Philippines
23 Apr 16
ticks are yucks ..
1 person likes this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
23 Apr 16
Yes they are.
1 person likes this
• Davao, Philippines
24 Apr 16
1 person likes this
@Susan2015 (18326)
• United States
23 Apr 16
Never seen any ticks here. But I'm always checking our two fur babies for them and for fleas too.
1 person likes this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
23 Apr 16
Then you're lucky.
@marlina (60958)
• Canada
23 Apr 16
Hope you won't get bitten again.
1 person likes this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
23 Apr 16
Thanks, I hope I don't either. I worked out in the little flower bed here last night, and I checked myself when I came in and was "clean."
@Corbin5 (79020)
• United States
22 Apr 16
Ticks are nasty little buggers. Have to always check the dog to make sure she has her tick-medication and also check her little body after a morning romp at the dog park.
1 person likes this
@Raelove (15181)
• Saco, Maine
22 Apr 16
Those medications work only so far, and they wear off fast, as I learned with my cats. They always had ticks on them every single day after being outside.
1 person likes this