Most Ocean County, New Jersey residents don’t start thinking about ticks and the disease risk they pose until June; but it was early May when a 51-year-old Warren County woman died from a tick bite. The tick-borne disease the woman contracted, Powassan virus, an encephalitis virus that causes inflammation of the brain, is so rare only eight other cases were diagnosed in the U.S. last year; but it was also the first known case of this tick-borne virus ever reported in New Jersey.
The disease is spread by the black-legged tick, commonly known in New Jersey as the deer tick, and the woodchuck tick, which is more commonly found in the woods of Maine and Northern New England. The two tick species are so similar in appearance that they can only be differentiated under a microscope.
It’s the Time of Year Ticks Become Active
The appearance of this tick-borne disease in New Jersey is one more reason to be on the lookout for ticks on shoes, clothing and skin after spending time outdoors. Ticks are often associated with wooded areas and tall grass, but these tiny insects can be carried into your Monmouth or Ocean County yard by pets, birds, squirrels and other wildlife.
New Jersey Tick Removal Tips
Several species of ticks inhabit New Jersey, and can cause several diseases, including Lyme disease. Ticks transmit disease while feeding on the blood of animals or people. Ticks should be removed as soon as possible when found. (Click here to find out how to remove a tick safely.) Preserve the tick in a tightly-sealed container and take it to your physician or local health department to be tested for disease. Early treatment can prevent often debilitating symptoms.
Talk to the tick extermination NJ experts at Allison Pest Control about protecting your family from tick bites.