Why experts predict high tick activity in 2021
- Experts predict that summer 2021 will be a “tick time bomb”.
- Due to a mild winter, most parts of the country already have more ticks this season than last year as the tiny insects thrive in the moisture.
- How to protect yourself from tick bites, which can lead to various diseases such as Lyme disease.
Every summer we hear the same warning: It’s going to be a bad year for ticks. But entomologists (aka insect experts) say 2021 could live up to that message. In fact, The Weather Channel called this year a “tick time bomb”.
According to Robert Lockwood, Associate Certified Entomologist at Ehrlich Pest Control, experts will see a thriving tick population as early as 2021. “Due to the mild winters and climate change, we are already seeing more ticks this season than last year,” he says. Why is a wet winter important? Ticks thrive in moisture. As a result, “Regions with wetter and warmer winters will have higher tick populations this spring and summer,” said Ben Hottel, Ph.D., technical services manager at Orkin. The warmer and more humid an environment becomes, “the faster the life cycle of the arthropods is completed,” explains Anna Berry, certified entomologist and technical director at Terminix. “When it gets very cold, very hot, or very dry, it can take longer to get from one stage of development to the next.” A wet winter and spring and warm temperatures “provide the warmth and moisture necessary for rapid development,” she says .
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