[CT Birds] TICKS
Mntncougar at aol.com
Mntncougar at aol.com
Thu Jun 1 17:19:00 EDT 2017
If you read nothing else, read the last paragraph, because that's the real
point of this post.
Since I've been birding I have just accepted ticks of all kinds as just
one of the hazards of being outdoors. I was relatively easy for me, since
years ago when i was more of a hiker I had to cope with the same problems. I
don't like them but I live with them.
But this year is different.
My solution has always been simply to do frequent tick checks when ever in
the woods or brushy/grassy areas and again as soon as I get home and can
strip down. Even so, I've been bitten by 2 dog ticks this year. I will tell
you first hand that DEET does nothing to deter them, and other mosquito
type repellents even less. I've been told that some "natural" remedies work,
but I'll let others trust them.
If you get a tick on your pants watch it for a moment before you dispose
of it. You will be amazed at how fast they sometimes climb up your leg.
Within a minute or two they can be at your waist band, and if you have an
untucked shirt, that means on your upper body skin in another minute or so.
And of course, If your pants are untucked they may climb up under them as
well. That's even worse. I know.
They can even be up high enough in the brush that they can drop down on
your head, neck and shoulders too, but for me that has been rare. However I
just met someone the other day who had 2 on the back of her neck, inside her
I am NOT trying scare everyone indoors for the summer. It's not pleasant
but I deal with it, and so can you.
Here's what I always do and what I am doing this year. Number one is
frequent tick checks, as above. If you are in a brushy or grassy area that means
at least every 5 minutes or so, particularly if you have been moving
around. While I do believe that most ticks jump from brush, etc, I think they
also jump from the ground, because I have found many while I was in a
completely open area with no vegetation more than 6 inches or so high. Usually they
are just a few inches above pants cuffs in that case.
This may also work for you, but I don't do it. Tuck your pants in your
socks. It is often recommended but I find it very uncomfortable and they
usually pull out quickly.
I travel a lot out west and chiggers are the biggest problem there, but
there is one solution that works for both. PERMETHRIN. You don't ever put it
on yourself. Treat your clothing and let it dry. I treat my pants and
socks. It's easy to find, Walmart sells it, but its a little cheaper and in
larger quantities online (Amazon, etc., brand name I use is Sawyer). I have
finally broken down and treated my clothes now for ticks and will continue this
year unless the problem abates. It's easy to use, sprays on, and will last
up to 6 weeks through 4 washings, or so they say. I've never had damage of
any kind to clothing and once dry, no smell either. Permethrin doesn't
just repel ticks. If they come in contact it will actually kill them. Good
stuff. If you plan to be out a lot, try it. If you can afford them, places
like LL Bean even sell clothing that is supposedly permanently treated.
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