Archive for the ‘Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever’ Category

New Guidance for Treatment of Lyme & Other TBD in Pregnancy

New guidance for treatment of Lyme and other TBD in pregnancy

Oct. 27, 2021

from the Lyme Disease Association website:

In a recently published review article,* authors provide a comprehensive summary of treatment options for pregnant patients with less common bacterial, fungal, and viral infections, including several tick-borne diseases (Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, human granulocytic anaplasmosis, human monocytic ehrlichiosis, babesiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever).

This review provides guidance to clinicians based on the most recently published evidence-based research and expert recommendations.

The review included a search of MEDLINE (inception to March 2021); clinical practice guidelines (both national and international); the CDC website; and additional references from bibliographies of noteworthy articles. The review also provides a list of medications on the WHO Essential Medications List that are used to treat the above infections (*Alyssa P. Gould et al., Drugs in Context-peer reviewed).

A summary of key treatment recommendations from the review article for several tick-borne diseases during pregnancy are as follows:

Lyme disease:

  • Treatment of gestational Lyme disease is essential to reduce adverse outcomes in pregnancy. The data shows adverse outcomes in treated pregnancy is (11–16%) compared to untreated disease (50–60%).
  • Doxycycline should not routinely be used in pregnancy for Lyme disease in order to avoid adverse side effects including transient suppression of bone growth and staining of developing teeth, especially with proven alternatives.
  • Amoxicillin is the preferred treatment in the absence of neurological manifestations or atrioventricular heart block.
  • Ceftriaxone is typically reserved for patients with severe neurological or cardiac manifestations.
  • One study noted a non-significant increase in adverse pregnancy outcomes, such as pregnancy loss, among orally treated (31.6%) compared to parenterally treated (12.1%) pregnant patients.
  • Alternative oral therapy is cefuroxime axetil and parenteral therapies include penicillin G or cefotaxime.
  • Late Lyme disease (often manifesting as Lyme arthritis) may be managed with oral or parenteral β-lactams.

Ehrlichiosis & Anaplasmosis:

  • If infections with anaplasmosis or ehrlichiosis is suspected, treatment should be initiated due to the likelihood of complications and potential for vertical transmission of disease.
  • Rifampin has shown in vitro activity against ehrlichia and has been used successfully in limited case reports of pregnant women with anaplasmosis.
  • Doxycycline has been used successfully to treat ehrlichiosis.
  • Due to a lack of data, these pregnant patients should be closely monitored for resolution of disease.
  • The addition of amoxicillin or cefuroxime is suggested if coinfection with Lyme disease is suspected, as rifampin does not have activity against B. burgdorferi.


  • Patients with suspected babesiosis should be treated due to potential complications, including possible vertical transmission to the fetus.
  • Combination therapy is preferred with clindamycin plus quinine.
  • Longer treatment courses or retreatment may be needed in cases with symptoms and/or parasitaemia persisting >3 months. Resolution of parasitaemia should be used to determine treatment course.

Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF):

  • RMSF cases are associated with poor outcomes for the fetus, regardless of the treatment.
  • Prevention is crucial for pregnant patients, and treatment should be provided within 3–5 days of exposure.
  • Doxycycline is the preferred therapy. Treatment course is typically 5–7 days or 3 days after fever resolution.
  • Chloramphenicol is a proposed alternative treatment; but there are concerns for significant adverse effects, including myelosuppression, aplastic anaemia, and grey baby syndrome, specifically at or near birth, and it is associated with higher mortality in RMSF. (chloramphenicol is not available orally in the US).

Read the full review article here.

Read other LDA articles regarding treatment here

Study Shows American Dog Ticks in Western U.S. Are a Separate Species

Study Shows American Dog Ticks in Western U.S. Are a Separate Species

Dermacentor similis, male

Researchers have split the medically important American dog tick into two species: the existing Dermacentor variabilis in eastern states and the newly described Dermacentor similis west of the Rocky Mountains. An adult male D. similis tick is shown here. (Photo courtesy of Paula Lado, Ph.D.)

By Melissa Mayer

Melissa Mayer

Melissa Mayer

Rocky Mountain spotted fever spreads when Rickettsia rickettsia bacteria pour into a bite wound while an American dog tick takes a blood meal. Unlike some other tick-borne diseases, which require a longer bite to transmit, Rocky Mountain spotted fever infection may take place within the first 30 minutes of the tick bite.

The distribution of the American dog tick (Dermacentor variabilis) in the United States is a wide yet broken one. It’s mostly found throughout the central and eastern parts of the country—with a few western populations all the way on the other side of the Rocky Mountains. But are these widely separated populations really the same species?

In a study published this month in the Journal of Medical Entomology, a team of researchers at Ohio State University used an integrative taxonomy approach—looking at both physical and genetic evidence—to determine that the ticks formerly known as Dermacentor variabilis in the west are a new species, which they’ve named Dermacentor similis.

Wild, Wild West

Paula Lado, Ph.D.

Paula Lado, Ph.D.

“We were working on other aspects related to Dermacentor evolution and phylogenetics, and our results consistently showed a separation between populations from the western states and all other locations eastern of the Rockies,” says lead author Paula Lado, Ph.D., who is now with the Center for Vector-Borne Infectious Diseases at Colorado State University. “And that had been shown in other studies in the past, so we decided to explore the topic in depth.”

Dermacentor tick collection locations

(See link for article)



The study also found that ticks from Wisconsin and Michigan formed a small subcluster in the eastern group, which means there’s probably some variation there.

The difference between these ticks is in the minutia.  They both will happily infect you. While taxonomy considers this a “win” it’s just more research that doesn’t help patients at all. A tick is a tick is a tick.  All suck your blood and have the potential of transmitting life-altering pathogens into the human and animal body.

Important quotes:

And, because the American dog tick transmits the bacteria that cause Rocky Mountain spotted fever as well as other pathogens, describing a new species like D. similis means taking a close look at which diseases these ticks can carry and how well they do it, which is called vector competency.

“Splitting D. variabilis into two species may mean that they could be vectors for different pathogens,” Lado says. “In my opinion, it is crucial to determine the vector competency of the new species, D. similis. That will allow for us to know what pathogens are transmitted by both Dermacentor species.”

A word of warning on those quotes: all of these variables have been proven over time to be short-sighted as ticks can acquire the ability to transmit things they never used to transmit.  They have also been found in places they never were before.  Doctors looking at entomology maps have been misdiagnosing people for decades as the information is constantly changing, limited, and imperfect. Please see: The Confounding Debate Over Lyme in the South (Speilman’s maps)

Transmission times have been hotly contested for over 40 years. Mainstream medicine and conflict-riddled researchers and public health ‘authorities’ continue to doggedly state the party line that Lyme transmission takes at least 24-48 hours, whereas reality paints a far different picture, showing the potential transmission of Lyme (and other pathogens) can occur within a few hours.  It must also be remembered that minimum transmission time has never been determined, and some coinfections like Powassan virus can be transmitted within minutes. There’s also the sticky issue of partially fed ticks being able to transmit much sooner.

There is an absolute dearth of research on the issue of coinfected ticks and coinfected patients.  Does coinfection alter transmission times?  The coinfection issue remains in the Dark Ages, leaving patients and the doctors who dare to treat them muddling blindly through the process.  But, hey now we know some worthless information about the undersides of ticks!

Again, the only box Lyme/MSIDS fits into is “Pandora’s.” Trying to put a lid on this thing is completely futile.

For more:

Below is a picture of a tick, without food or water for days, and the thousands of eggs it laid.

Tick eggs

Ticks aren’t picky, and can show up in the wildest of places:



Tickborne Illnesses in Finland

TOUCHED BY LYME: Tick-borne illnesses in Finland

April 28, 2021

Guest blogger C.M. Rubin interviews two European scientists about the prevalence of Lyme disease and other tick-borne infections in Finland.

The Global Search for Education: Finland — Ticks

by C M Rubin as featured in the Huffington Post

Lyme disease is caused by a bacterium transmitted to humans via a tick bite. The CDC (Center for Disease Control) claims that Lyme Borreliosis is the most common and fastest growing infectious illness in the United States. The disease can cause a variety of flu-like symptoms such as fever, achy joints, fatigue and headache. Additionally, Anaplasmosis/Ehrlichiosis, Babesiosis, Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Bartonella, Tularemia, and more recently, Borrelia Miyamotoi (a distant relative of Lyme Borreliosis) are other recognized tick-borne infectious diseases in the United States.

Experts have been unable to agree for decades on whether a case definition called chronic Lyme disease exists. Yet, some Lyme victims, even after taking the standard treatment of antibiotics, continue to suffer from long-term and often serious health problems for years after they first contract the disease. Does chronic Lyme disease exist, or is the condition which some patients experience an autoimmune or nervous system response triggered by the infection, or indeed is it a bit of both? These are some of the major questions researchers are trying to figure out as they take on the enormous challenges of identifying better Lyme diagnostic tools and treatment plans for what is becoming a growing global public health crisis.

Today in The Global Search for Education, I take a look at tick-borne illnesses in Finland. I am joined by Docent Jarmo Oksi, Finland’s leading researcher in the field of Lyme disease, who is based at the University of Turku in Finland. In addition, I welcome Markku Kuusi, Chief Medical Officer from Finland’s National Institute for Health and Welfare.

2013-04-25-cmrubinworldticks1400.jpg“The weakness of the Finnish surveillance system is that we don’t collect any clinical information on patients, we only get notifications from laboratories.” — Markku Kuusi
What is the annual incidence of Lyme disease in Finland and in Europe at large?Jarmo: Laboratory reports on Lyme Borreliosis cases (based on positive serology) have doubled in 10 years and are now about 1,500. The estimated number of Lyme Borreliosis infection cases is about four times this number — i.e. estimated incidence in Finland is 5,000-6,000 annually (population 5.5 million), which is about 100 per 100,000 inhabitants per year. However there are areas in the Southwestern Archipelago with incidence of 1000 per 100,000 inhabitants per year.

Markku: Based on the National Infectious Disease Register, the incidence of Lyme disease in Finland has been about 30/100,000 during the past few years. In terms of the annual incidence in other Nordic countries, in Norway it has been about 6/100,000 and in Denmark, 1 – 2/100,000. It is hard to believe that there is such a difference in actual incidence, so that is why I believe the diagnostic criteria are truly different. The weakness of the Finnish surveillance system is that we don’t collect any clinical information on patients, we only get notifications from laboratories; so it is difficult to say whether the symptoms of our cases really are compatible with Lyme Borreliosis.

Would you comment on the annual incidence of any of the other tick-borne illnesses which are endemic in Finland in addition to Lyme.

Markku: Tick-borne Encephalitis (TBE) is another important tick-borne disease in Finland. The incidence has been particularly high on Aland Island and therefore TBE vaccination is included in the national immunization program. Before the vaccination program, the annual incidence was up to 100/100,000 population. Now it has decreased substantially. It seems that in other parts of Finland (apart from Aland Island), the incidence is increasing, and therefore other areas may also be included in the immunization program in the near future (for example, the Archipelago around the city of Turku).

Do you believe that chronic Lyme disease exists or that it is a misnomer for other diseases triggered by Lyme disease?

Markku: This is a difficult question. I think it is clear that some patients have a prolonged course of the disease which may last several months. The most experienced clinicians in Finland think that a continuing Borrelia infection is possible if the patient has not received adequate treatment for the illness, resulting in disseminated infection. Even after adequate treatment, some patients have symptoms due to immunological mechanisms, but it is very hard to say whether these symptoms are related to Borrelia infection or to some other causes.

2013-04-25-cmrubinworldlabra_182.JPG_3420500.jpg“The most experienced clinicians in Finland think that a continuing Borrelia infection is possible if the patient has not received adequate treatment for the illness, resulting in disseminated infection.”— Markku Kuusi
If you believe in chronic Lyme disease, what do you believe are the most effective ways to treat it?Jarmo: If you mean chronic infection, I think that this entity after standard antibiotic therapy is very very seldom (I see about one case in five years). However, if detected –e.g. with cultivation or PCR (the most specific way to detect), the treatment I give is individual antibiotic treatment — maybe double the length compared to the initial treatment.

What do you believe is the most effective way to treat symptoms triggered by the infection, e.g. chronic auto-immune reaction?

Jarmo: During the first months I wait for gradual improvement. If there is no improvement after six to 12 months, I then start low-dose corticosteroid treatment for a certain subset of patients. Some other subsets may get help from, for example, amitriptyline, which raises the threshold for pain sensation.

What tests currently available to the general public, other than the Western Blot test, do you believe provide a better degree of certainty?

Jarmo: PCR (and culture) are useful in some situations (culture only in research settings), but even PCR is not sensitive enough to detect all cases — e.g. in CSF (cerebrospinal fluid) of neuroborreliosis cases. Besides Western Blots, ELISA tests based on C6 peptide are generally good as confirmatory tests.

2013-04-25-cmrubinworld_P6Q5372.JPG_198500.jpg“We are currently enrolling patients into a study on neuroborreliosis: comparison of IV Ceftriaxone for 3 weeks vs. oral Doximycin for 4 weeks. Hopefully this study will give us new knowledge on markers of how to identify patients with reactive symptomatology triggered by Lyme neuroborreliosis.”— Jarmo Oksi
Are you aware of any other promising tests in development?Markku: Last year, a Finnish group reviewed the diagnostic tests in our country. It is my understanding that right now there are not unfortunately any new reliable tests available. So we shall have to wait awhile for them.

To what research do you believe scientists around the world must give priority in order to overcome the challenges the public faces with finding a cure for Lyme disease?

Markku: I think it is important to better understand the mechanism behind the sequelae of acute borreliosis. Therefore, we need more research on the immunology of the disease. In other words, how does the bacteria actually cause joint symptoms or neurologic symptoms. I think this will help us to develop better diagnostic tests and hopefully better drugs. I believe antibiotics are not the only solution.

What is the focus of your research and how does it relate to the challenges of identification and cure of Lyme disease and diseases triggered by Lyme?

Jarmo: We are currently enrolling patients into a study on neuroborreliosis: comparison of IV Ceftriaxone for three weeks vs. oral Doximycin for four weeks. Hopefully this study (with control CSF specimens) and long follow-ups of patients also will give us new knowledge on markers of how to identify patients with reactive symptomatology triggered by Lyme neuroborreliosis.

How can technology help us find a cure for Lyme disease faster?

Markku: This is not really a field in which I am knowledgeable, but I believe that better molecular and immunological methods may give possibilities for new diagnostics and for the development of new drugs. What I really hope is that there will be better and more specific laboratory tests for Lyme Borreliosis in the future. I think that one of the key issues is to harmonize the laboratory methods so that we can get a better understanding of the epidemiology of Lyme disease in Finland.

C M Rubin is a child and family health and education advocate.  She is the author of a number of award winning books as well as the widely read online series THE GLOBAL SEARCH FOR EDUCATION.

Follow C. M. Rubin on Twitter:



I disagree with two tenets in this paper:

  • Chronic Lyme is rare.  I personally, as well as my husband, and most I deal with have improved immensely or even reached remission with lengthy treatment utilizing numerous antimicrobials and other modalities.  As they say, “The proof is in the pudding.”  Lyme spirochetes have been found in the autopsied brain despite treatment.  There are also extensive global research showing the persistence of the organism in 700 peer-reviewed papers (as well as coinfections that often come with Lyme): Peer-Reviewed Evidence of Persistence of Lyme:MSIDS copy  Please keep in mind that everything is rigged against reporting chronic infection. Globally, doctors work under the CDC/IDSA’s myopic focus on the acute phase and frank denial of persistent infection.  It doesn’t surprise me at all that a Finnish researcher also cow-tows to this thinking.  It’s rampant.
  • That we need yet more research on the acute phase of Lyme.  Frankly, that’s about all we have.  We desperately need researchers to quit myopically focusing on this phase of the illness and study the thousands upon thousands with chronic/persistent symptoms who often do to not test positive on the abysmal CDC 2-tiered testing, which is rigged to not pick up chronic infection, and do not have the “classic” EM rash.  These two variables have kept the sickest patients from being studied.

Know Your Ticks

Know your ticks

Easy to read table shows the most common ticks found in the U.S. that transmit pathogens to humans.
Note: only a partial list. To learn more about tick-bite prevention and how to be Tick AWARE, click here

Click here to download the Tick Table

Tick Table

For more:

Remember, in Wisconsin, ticks are found in every county in the state. Researchers are also finding them in bright, open, mowed lawns.

New Asian Longhorned Tick Pest Alert Available

New Asian Longhorned Tick Pest Alert Available

Asian longhorned tick
Asian longhorned tick. Photo by James Gathany.

A new Pest Alert from the North Central IPM Center focuses on the Asian longhorned tick, which is native to East Asia. This tick targets livestock and can reproduce even in the absence of male ticks.

“A single individual tick has the potential to establish entire new populations almost anywhere in the US, but if we are vigilant, we may be able to eradicate this tick from new locations,” said Scott Larson, co-leader for the Public Tick IPM Working Group and assistant entomologist for the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District.

The Asian longhorned tick pest alert includes details about the tick’s life cycle, identification, and management options. These ticks are a threat to livestock because large tick infestations on one animal can lead to stress, blood loss and even death. There is also concern that these ticks may be able to spread disease as they feed on multiple hosts throughout their lives.

“We felt this pest alert was needed to increase awareness of the Asian longhorned tick” said Leah McSherry, community IPM coordinator at the IPM Institute of North America, Inc and member of the Public Tick IPM Working Group. “We are optimistic that increased awareness of the Asian longhorned tick will lead to increased management and better control.”

The Tick IPM Working Group formed in 2013 and works to support a network of experts and interested partners that cooperate to reduce tick populations and reduce tick-borne disease risk. More details about this team can be found on the Public Tick IPM Working Group website.

The Public Tick IPM Working Group produced this pest alert with support from the IPM Institute and the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Crop Protection and Pest Management Program through the North Central IPM Center (2018-70006-28883).

Pest Alerts are published by the North Central IPM Center as new species arrive in the United States and create new management challenges. They are often written by working groups or by interested researchers or Extension personnel.  A list of Pest Alerts created by the North Central IPM Center and instructions for starting a new one are available here.

Asian Longhorned Tick (Haemaphysalis longicornis)

Contact for free printed copies.  Include in email: 1) Pest Alert name, 2) number of packs desired (only available in packs of 50) and, 3)  the date they will be needed.

A printable pdf is available.

Contact for free printed copies.  Include in email: 1) Pest Alert name, 2) number of packs desired (only available in packs of 50) and, 3)  the date they will be needed.


The Asian longhorned tick (ALT) is primarily a pest of concern in livestock (cattle, goats, sheep) and studies suggest there is a potential for the ALT to vector pathogens that cause Rocky Mountain spotted fever and other tick-borne illnesses. In its native range, the ALT can transmit Rickettsia japonica, which causes Japanese spotted fever, and the potentially fatal, severe fever with thrombocytopenia syndrome (SFTS) virus, among others.

Asian Longhorned Tick Facts
  • Females can reproduce without mating with a male, which makes male ticks quite rare.
  • Ticks have one blood meal during each life cycle stage.
  • Females can lay up to 2,000 eggs.

Asian longhorned tick (Haemaphysalis). Image by James Gathany.

Origin and Distribution

The ALT is native to East Asia, with established populations in China, Japan and South Korea, and is considered invasive in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. The ALT was first believed to be discovered in the United States in August of 2017 on a tick-infested female Icelandic sheep in New Jersey. An unidentified
tick specimen archived in Union County, New Jersey, now identified as an ALT, has moved the assumed introduction date to 2013. As of 2021, the ALT has been detected in primarily mid-Atlantic and southern states. For the current distribution, visit the USDA-APHIS website.

Size of Asian longhorned tick compared to a dime. Image by James Gathany at CDC.

Life Cycle

There are four life stages of the ALT. The ALT begins its life as an egg. The second life stage is the larval stage. At this point, the ALT is six-legged. The next life stage is an eight-legged nymph. The next and last life stage is the adult. Ticks take one blood meal as they transition to the next life stage. After each successful blood meal, the tick releases from its host, molts and then begins to quest for a new host. An interesting aspect of the ALT is that females can reproduce without mating with a male. This process is called parthenogenesis and as a result, male Asian longhorned ticks are rare.

asian longhorned tick life cycle


The adult ALT resembles the adult brown dog tick shown below (Rhipicephalus sanguineus). To differentiate the two species, look for the presence of “eyes” on the sides of its body near the second row of legs, which is present on the brown dog tick.

Brown dog tick (Rhipicephalus sanguineus)  with “eyes” on the sides of body. Image by Herlberto Verdugo M. & Darby S. Murphy.

Human Health Concerns

The first human ALT bite in the U.S. was reported in 2018 in Westchester County, New York, and did not result in the subject becoming ill. The ALT has not been found on rodents including white-footed mice, shrews and chipmunks, which are natural reservoirs for tick-borne pathogens. In one study, 120 ALTs were tested for pathogens that cause human disease including species in the following genera: Anaplasma, Babesia, Borrelia and Ehrlichia; all were found to be negative. In lab settings, ticks have been reported to transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Further testing is necessary to determine the maintenance and transmission of this pathogen in nature. In a recent study, 263 ticks were tested, and one adult female was positive for Borrelia burgdorferi, a bacterial species that causes Lyme disease. Continued observation and testing of the ALT is imperative to monitor its threat to public health.

Animal Health Concerns

The United States Department of Agriculture and animal health officials have noted their concern about the ALT’s impact on livestock. The ALT is notorious for large-scale infestations with multiple ticks on one animal, which leads to stress on the animal and reductions in growth and production. A serious infestation can lead to death of the animal due to blood loss. The ALT has been linked to the death of five cows in Surry County, North Carolina, with one bull having over 1,000 attached ticks. Cattle tested positive for Theileria orientalis Ikeda at a Virginia farm where the ALT was found. The ALT is referred to as the “cattle tick” in New Zealand, where it has been linked to Theileria orientalis Ikeda outbreaks among cattle.

Integrated Tick Management Strategies

The strategies for avoiding the ALT are similar to techniques used for other tick species, including avoiding wading through the woods or grassy areas. If walking along a path, try to stay near the middle to avoid questing ticks along the grassy edges. It is also important to check clothes and pets after coming in from outdoors, especially after walking through wooded, brushy or grassy areas. Throwing clothes in the dryer on high heat for 10 minutes will kill any ticks that remain hidden on clothes. Check any items for ticks that cannot go in a dryer such as backpacks and shoes. The next suggested strategy is to take a shower and check your body for ticks. Be sure to inspect armpits, ears, bellybutton, back of knees, hair, between legs and waist. Lastly, Asian longhorned ticks can be avoided by purchasing and wearing permethrin-treated clothing or spraying clothes with an EPA-registered insect repellent such as DEET, picaridin, insect repellent (IR) 3535 or oil of lemon eucalyptus. If bitten by a tick, remove immediately by grabbing the tick by the head with a tweezers as close to the skin as possible and pull upwards. Be sure to clean the bite with soap and water or rubbing alcohol.

Integrated tick management strategies for livestock include trimming grass, weeds and branches in and around pastures and ensuring wooded areas are at least 10 feet from fences. Visually check for ticks on animals daily on their chest, jaw, belly, ears, eyelids and elbows and use your hands to feel for embedded ticks. If ticks become a problem, apply a low-risk, EPA-registered insecticide while closely following the label instructions. Area-wide acaricides are another management strategy used to reduce tick populations.

For more information on the Asian longhorned tick, visit the USDA-APHIS website.


Authored by the Public Tick IPM Working Group. For more information see:


This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Crop Protection and Pest Management Program through the North Central IPM Center (2018-70006-28883).

For information about the Pest Alert program, please contact Jacqueline Pohl, communications specialist for the North Central IPM Center at

April 2021



According to this study, the ALT contributes minimally, if at all, to transmission of Lyme disease spirochetes in the United States.

Please remember they’ve said this exact same thing about other ticks.

Transmission can still happen and if you are the sorry sucker it happens to – it makes all the difference in the world.  Here’s the deal – ticks are not your friends.Take each and every tick bite as seriously as a heart attack.  Little is known about the Asian Longhorned tick but in Asia it’s bite KILLS 15% of those whom contract it. Don’t take this lightly.


Several other human pathogens have been detected in the ticks, but it’s not clear the Asian longhorned species are able to transmit them to humans. They include Anaplasma, Ehrlichia, Rickettsia, and Borrelia species. Lyme disease is caused by Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria.

She warned that the organisms are present in states where longhorned ticks have been found and that it’s possible that the tick—known to be an aggressive bitermight be able to transmit Heartland virus, given its close relationship to SFTS virus.

Pritt said it’s clear that the invasive species is here to stay for the foreseeable future, and next steps should include public awareness campaigns that incorporate the new information, easy-to-use resources for labs to identify the tick, and more research to understand the implications of the new findings.

For a great read on this aggressive biter which can clone itself and is found in sunny open locations:  This picture demonstrates how if you brush against a blade of grass a literal cluster bomb of ticks explodes onto you.  To downplay this is really short sighted.three_surprising_4.png-2