Tuesday, 11 September 2018 12:43

Hot weather might mean fewer ticks Featured

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STATEWIDE - This summer's hot weather might lead to fewer ticks.

State researchers say they have seen a decrease in the number of deer ticks this summer and believe it could be because of the above-average temperatures.


The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention says that this has helped reduce the number of Lyme disease cases in the state, with the number of cases in May, June and July below average.


The drop is a sharp contrast to last year when Maine saw a 23 percent jump in Lyme disease cases in the state.


Experts say the ticks are less active in the hot and dry weather.


"They remain in the leaf litter kind of in an attempt to stay as hydrated as possible," Griffin Dill, Tick Program coordinator for the University of Maine's Cooperative Extension.


"It doesn't necessarily kill off the ticks but it certainly reduces their activity and the decrease in activity can potentially lead to a lower risk of people and pets encountering those ticks," Dill said.


But Maine is not yet in the clear.


Adult deer ticks are extremely active throughout the fall so people need to still be vigilant and take precautions to protect themselves against ticks.