Monday, July 6, 2009


The forest is full of all kinds of creatures, great and small. Ticks are some of those small creatures you’d rather not see! Ticks are in the spider family, but while spiders live respectable lives hunting for themselves and controlling insect populations, ticks are free loaders. They literally sit around and wait for someone to come by and feed them. Don’t let that someone be you:

Tuck your shirt into your pants and tuck your pants into your socks. Ticks can’t bite you and suck your blood if they can’t find your skin.

Spray your clothing with an insect repellent – especially one containing DEET that claims to protect against ticks.

Stay on the designated trails to avoid the dense vegetation where ticks usually hang out.

After your encounter with the natural world, check your body for ticks. Get in front of a mirror, take off every garment, and perform a head-to-toe inspection. Turn your clothing inside-out and carefully examine the seams. Put your clothes in the dryer on high heat to exterminate any hitchhikers.

If you find a tick, don’t freak out. He has to be attached for days in order to transmit any of those nasty diseases he carries, so you have a minute to make sure you get him off right. Use tweezers and extract his little head from your skin. If you are hosting an overwhelming number of these parasites, revert to the chigger solution: one cup of bleach in 4 inches of bathwater.

Take a few precautions and the nuisance of ticks won’t keep you from enjoying the outdoors.

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