A New Species Of Tick Has Come To New Jersey
You know how scientists can point to some annoying animals and say "yeah it's a bummer that bees can sting us, but we need them to pollinate plants" or "nobody likes having a spider in their house, but at least they eat other bugs"...has anyone ever found a good reason that ticks exist? Do they do literally anything positive? Or are they just disease-spreading hellspawn that should be wiped from the face of the planets?
In case you couldn't tell, I'm a bit fiery when it comes to ticks. Lyme Disease has impacted my wife's life, so we're very careful when it comes to our dogs and now obviously our kids. Just a couple months ago, we found a tick on our older daughter - luckily, it wasn't the type of tick that transmitted Lyme Disease.
While we all know about the risk associated with the deer tick and the lone star tick, have you heard of the bat tick? Probably not, because they have never been seen in New Jersey - until now.
The Rutgers Center for Vector Biology says that the Bat Tick has been found in a number of New Jersey counties for the first time. Bat ticks have been found infected with microbes associated with human health risks in other states, including Pennsylvania.
Bat ticks are, obviously, known for feeding on bats. If you had a family of bats in your attic or barn or whatever, even if those animals are removed, the ticks could still remain in the area and be the look for a new food source. Even if the bats aren't inside, just living in trees nearby, you could still be at risk.
My coworker Justin @ WOBM pointed out that this news is a double-whammy, as we're heading into peak tick season anyway, and now we have to worry about a new species that can cause us harm.