A Tick that Feeds on Birds May Increase the Range of Lyme Disease

A Tick that Feeds on Birds May Increase the Range of Lyme Disease

11/23/2015

Excerpt: "If you have lived in the northeastern United States any time in the last 25 years or so, you have almost certainly heard of Lyme disease. You may have scrutinized odd-looking insect bites, wondering if they are developing the disease’s tell-tale “bulls-eye” rash. And you may have become skilled at distinguishing blacklegged ticks (Ixodes scapularis), which can transmit the pathogen, from American dog ticks (Dermacentor variabilis), which cannot.

But, blacklegged ticks aren’t the only tick species that plays a role in the Lyme disease story. Researchers at Old Dominion University in Virginia are focusing on another tick, Ixodes affinis, that can also serve as a vector for Lyme disease. But don’t look for this tick on your pant legs; I. affinis doesn’t bite humans."

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