Tick in Your Maine Backyard? Turns Out, It Could Be Very Deadly
This story and research stem from the unsettling wood tick that I just ripped off my poor puppy I must have missed when I checked him for ticks the other night after our hike at Bug Light Park in South Portland.
When we hear the word "tick," we automatically think of these little blood-suckers attaching to our dogs.
However, let's not forget that ticks can also be deadly to humans as well, especially in Maine this year.
According to News Center Maine, once the weather hits 32 degrees minimum (which can be confusing since it still feels like winter), these ticks are out to find a warm body to attach to, and immediately.
Since it's now spring in Maine, we're actually in the dead center of tick season...YAY :(
Pestworld.org cites the University of Maine when it comes to peak tick "take-over," which is said to start in early spring into late fall. This leaves a lot of time in between for not only our furry loved ones to contract a variety of diseases but also our human loved ones as well.
Be careful in nature, kids!
If you are a hiker, or you like to be outside, you may want to note that tick season has two peaks in Maine. The first peak spans from early April through May, and the second continues on from June into early July, according to UMaine.
However, ticks are no strangers to the Maine areas.
Since 2015, according to News Center Maine, Maine has identified 15 cases of the Powassan virus (a rare tick-borne illness), where two of these cases included individuals dying from it.
Humans can contract the virus through the bite of an infected deer tick or woodchuck tick, the news station reported.
Most recently, the Maine CDC reported a resident from Sagadahoc County has died from exposure to the Powassan virus.
The Maine CDC said the "adult developed neurologic symptoms and died while in the hospital after becoming infected, likely in Maine. This is the first case of the tickborne illness identified in the state this year."
While the Powassan virus is rare, it's important to be aware of what it is, what you should do to stay tick-free, and that getting a tick is no small thing.
You can check out some more info on it from the Maine CDC here.