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42

I don't think they ever do test bites. If it looks anything like a dot surrounded by a ring, go see a doctor as you might have Lyme disease. From the Centers for Disease Control Tickborne diseases can result in mild symptoms treatable at home to severe infections requiring hospitalization. Although easily treated with antibiotics, these diseases can be ...


22

You will pick up ticks by spending a lot of time outdoors, but I routinely find them after walking across 10 ft of grass between my car and my front door. No matter how much prevention you practice, keep an eye out for Lyme symptoms, and go to the doctor for antibiotics if they show up. A vaccine would be much nicer. The socks-in-your pants method is very ...


21

I've done nearly all of my camping and hunting in deer tick country. You're on the right track with the basics: DEET, long sleeves, long pants, and high socks. At night use mesh as suggested in comments. I have seen some camping buddies spray the tent edges with DEET, I am skeptical that this works and may be harmful to the tent in the long term. Check ...


19

That definitely sounds like a tick bite from a lyme disease infested tick. Get to the doctor ASAP and they can give you an antibiotic that can kill the disease before it becomes a long term problem.


18

Probably the single most important thing I do is to tuck the bottom of my pants into the socks. Ticks like to crawl upwards. If they drop onto your feet, they will crawls upwards on your leg looking for the first bit of soft skin with blood vessels close to the surface. If they can get inside your pants, they will find such skin eventually. Otherwise, ...


18

You could use a hammock to keep yourself off of the ground, or even better try searching the web for "Tree tent" there are all manner of interesting designs that could suit. Obviously not great above the timberline!


16

I trout fish all the time in tick country, oftentimes hiking through forest to get to my desired location. I tend to camp when I fish too. Awareness is my #1 protection. A tick on your clothes doesn't matter, so if you're diligent, you should be fine. I also like wearing tighter fitting base layers and tucking them into each other (long underwear into socks,...


16

This is definitely a tick. If it were a spider it would appear that the legs all come from a central point, as spider bodies are separated into segments, whereas tick bodies are not. There are two main types of ticks - hard ticks and soft ticks. They look quite different. Hard ticks have what's known as a scutum (translates to shield) that covers the front ...


15

Coincidentally one of the physicians of Tropical Disease at a major Toronto Hospital has recently done a write up on ticks and how to deal with them. You can find the full article here. Here is the relevant part in case the link breaks in the future. What you can do: Insect repellants are effective at keeping ticks away. Dr. Keystone also recommends wearing ...


12

To answer the question asked, no, ticks don't do test bites. They walk on your body until they find a spot where the epidermis is thin enough, then just go for it. You won't find a tick latched onto the heel of your foot, the cap of your knee or other areas of thick skin. It takes a fairly long time for a tick to reach a blood vessel, so test bites would ...


11

You can't. All you can do is throughly inspect yourself or have someone check you over to see if they can find any. But there's nothing you can do to ensure there aren't anymore around, you can only hope that you've found them all on your person. When I first got married, my wife and I went for a hike along the river close to my home. We hung out on the ...


11

I wouldn't count on this working dependably, especially with shoes. The problem is that a microwave works by directly heating up certain molecules, most importantly water. And the energy from the microwave is spread over all such molecules in it. If your clothes are sweaty, there could easily be enough water in them so that it absorbs most of the energy and ...


10

Sauna. And not that joke-of-a-sauna but a real Scandinavian sauna with 80°C / 176°F. One thing with ticks is that they can take an enormous amount of beating and other forms of killing attempts but they're extremely vulnerable to heat. Same thing with deer flies. You can also try with a hot shower but you really have to gradually crank up the heat as much ...


10

For peace of mind, the tried and true method is to do a check at the end of the day. According to the Maine Department of Infectious Disease (Response to Question #20): Ticks need to be attached for at least 24 hours before they can transmit Lyme disease. ~ LINK. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) points to this as a very conservative figure. They say: ...


10

Yes, microwaving will kill ticks. It would do so by making the innards of the bug heat up until it explodes. Pretty gross, so definitely put the clothes inside a bag first! There's a few sources talking about killing ticks via microwave, for example this one and a Quora thread. There's even a video of someone doing this too. Things to be careful about: Do ...


9

Ticks can attach anywhere, in particular, they will find spots like the back of your knee, around waistbands, under armpits, undergarment straps or any other constricted place. Firstly, prefer to wear the clothing which is already treated for tick prevention by means of some tick repellent solution. The solution is supposed to contain Permethrin. Spray ...


9

avoid grass and shrubs; keep your clothings shut tight, i.e. there should be as less places for the tick to get to your body as possible; wrap socks around pants, wear long-sleeved shirt, put something on your head; inspect yourself from time to time - especially after you've been to dense plants area; very simple, but still effective (saved me a couple of ...


9

Yes, birds can get ticks. I found some sources online, amongst them this paper, which also contains information about birds and borreliosis. Primarily wild living birds are affected by ticks. Ticks use them as host and bite them, feed on them. The birds can spread borelliosis , and while the ticks don't just hang on birds to use them as a carrier, birds ...


8

Ticks are arachnoids and have an interesting life-cycle that you must understand if you want to avoid them. What this diagram doesn't explain is how the tick seeks a host. There may be as many as five blood meals in the life of a tick. Each is followed by moulting after which the tick climbs tall grass. It hangs from the end of a frond, waving barbed front ...


8

Determining whether it's a tick If you have a digital camera or mobile phone with you, you could try photographing your suspected tick. I don't have a tick handy for testing purposes, but I just tried a couple of close-up shots with my mid-range 2015 phone and it doesn't have any trouble imaging features well under a millimetre in size. A high-end phone or ...


8

I can't say for sure if this site is autoritive or not, but it does say that shaving your legs makes it more difficult for a tick to stick to you: Shave your legs: Leg hair makes it much easier for a tick to hitch a ride on you. I also found another source saying shaving helps as well: One thing that helps is shaving your legs. Not a foolproof way ...


7

Ah, the ticks of the Virginia woods. I don't think some of the posters here realize one can walk in those woods for an hour and accumulate 100+ ticks. I spent some time in the woods of Quantico (oohrah), and found how to beat the ticks. Treat your clothes and packs with permethrin. Here are two references: a hiker blog and Indiana University Health ...


7

(I'm adding this as an answer, because it addresses some points in the original question as well as supplementing the tips given by other answerers, but although it's kind of supplementary, it is too long to be a comment. If that's not correct SE etiquette, please let me know, but I thought the guidance was important enough to be added here.) Avoidance ...


7

Disclaimer: I have to deal with the possibility of 'mingling' with Ticks on an almost daily basis during the summer. And generally speaking am pretty up to date on 'tick stuff' however do not only take my word for it - Lyme Disease is serious - definitely look stuff up. First off, Lyme Disease is only transmitted by certain 'subspecies' of ticks. (If you're ...


7

I'm a bit surprised to see that nobody else as suggested this, but powder the top of your shoes/socks and bottom of your pants with sulfur. Powdered sulfur is available at local feed/ranch stores, and maybe even Wal-Mart or Lowes, depending on where you are. It's inexpensive and you can use an old sock as a very effective applicator. So as the others have ...


6

Yes, shampoo can help wash ticks out of your hair. That's why it's always recommended to shower soon after returning from an activity where you may have collected ticks. Ticks typically won't attach themselves for many hours after landing on your body. ( I've heard that they won't attach for 24 hours but not sure I believe it.) I use a shampoo container ...


6

I think it's good to wear long clothes and close all small entry spots through the layers. You can also use some repellents that contain 20 to 30% DEET (N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide) for your skin and permethrin for your clothes. But for hunting and also if you're doing some sport or work it's normal that you can't protect yourself 100% from tick bites. I ...


6

The Lyme Disease is not transferred from ticks to their larvae. This is really uncommon to say the least, so most ticks are "clean" at "birth". To carry Lyme Disease, the ticks have to become infected themselves. They usually get infected by infected hosts, like mice or hedgehogs. The bacteria now reside in the tick's digestive system. Ticks now develop ...


6

TL;DR: comb your scalp systematically with your fingers, wash your hair to remove them from hair (be careful with laundry carrying ticks home too), and try to catch/prevent them getting into your hair in the first place. Great question. I worked in the woods with long hair under a hard hat, and wow did I accumulate ticks. I'd reliably find >5 per day. I did ...


5

TL;DR: Inspect your camping spot for ticks first. Nymphs are really, really tiny. A touch-check is not enough, get a visual check if you can. Get the ticks off your clothes before you enter the tent. Know when you are the most vulnerable. A no-see-hum mesh will help, but may not be enough. A blood test may reduce the risk of unnoticed Lyme disease. It is ...


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