By: Blonde Two

Here in the UK, we seem to have special weeks for all sorts of weird and wonderful things but one of my newer discoveries is “Tick Bite Prevention Week” (TBPW).  Sadly, being Blonde and quite busy, we have missed TBPW which was 26th March – 1st April.  We have not, however, missed the ticks – they were out in their droves on Dartmoor this weekend and it was a case of “no skin left exposed” as we waited for the youngsters at our camp site.

I have decided that there is only one thing that is less glamourous than wandering about with your trousers tucked into your socks and that is asking someone to search you for ticks when you get home.  Both, however, were a necessity and luckily Mr B2 didn’t object to his strange task.  Blonde One and I have known people to get ticks nestled into some very odd places – I will tell you about the “eyelid-tick” but I won’t tell you about the “tick-in-a-boy-place”.  Needless to say, we didn’t get involved with the latter.  The tick below is an Australian cousin and the photo isn’t mine (I was avoiding ticks not looking for them) – image by John Tann.

Tick

Ticks, as well as being horrid, do have a more serious side to them and if they can’t be avoided, need to be dealt with correctly.  So if you need to find out more, you can either check out this website http://www.tickbitepreventionweek.org/index.html (it has pictures and everything) or you can read our tick list below;

1.  Ticks are more common between March and October and usually occur outside where animals have been grazing.

2.  Ticks can be tiny and are arachnids (spider family) – work out the number of legs yourself!

3.  Ticks bury their mouth parts into the skin and suck blood.  They like warm sweaty places such as armpits and groins (I am partial to a nice groin too).

4.  You won’t feel a tick bite you as they have anaesthetic in their saliva.

5.  Ticks carry a variety of diseases.  3000 people each year contract Lyme’s Disease from tick bites.  If you feel unwell after a tick bite, you should consult a doctor.

6.  The only safe ways to remove ticks are a tick removal tool or fine tipped tweezers.  Any movement or chemical that could result in contaminated fluids being regurgitated back into the body should be avoided.