FREMONT – The Nebraska Department of Agriculture has identified for the first time an established population of the blacklegged tick, also known as the deer tick, in Eastern Nebraska in Douglas, Sarpy and Saunders counties.
Blacklegged ticks can transmit Lyme disease and other diseases.
With the addition of the blacklegged tick there are now a total of four types of ticks found in the state that can cause illnesses. Ticks are generally found near the ground, in brushy or wooded areas. They can’t jump or fly. Instead, they climb tall grasses or shrubs and wait for you to brush against them. When this happens, they hang on to you with tiny claws and then take a bite.
Recommendations from Three Rivers Public Health Department for protecting yourself from all tick bites remain the same:
Wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts and sock when you are outside.
Avoid wooded and brushy areas with tall grass and shrubs.
Use an EPA approved insect repellent with at least 20 percent DEET, picaridin or IR3535 or permethrin-treated clothing.
Shower as soon as possible after spending time outdoors.
Check for ticks daily. Ticks can hide under the armpits, behind the knees, and in the hair.
If you find an attached tick early removal can minimize and often eliminate the chance of infection. To remove an attached tick, you should grasp the tick with a fine-tipped tweezers, as close to the skin as possible, and pull it straight out.
If signs of illness, such as rash or fever, develop in the days and weeks following the bite you should contact your health care provider.
For more information regarding tick related diseases you can visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website at https://www.cdc.gov/ticks/