Piscataquis Observer opinion piece focuses on ticks, Dill’s radio show appearance

An opinion piece in The Piscataquis Observer focused on a recent appearance and discussion of ticks by Jim Dill, a pest management specialist with University of Maine Cooperative Extension, on the “Maine Outdoors” radio show on The Voice of Maine News-Talk Network. According to the piece written by the show’s host, the takeaways of Dill’s appearance are that while there were 1,500 documented cases of Lyme disease in Maine last year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates the actual number is at least 10 times that; that deer ticks also can transmit babesiosis and anaplasmosis; that these diseases can be transmitted in a window less than the 36–58 hours it takes to transmit Lyme; and that ticks do not jump onto people but cling to plants and wait for a potential host to brush up against them. Checking for ticks after being outdoors and spraying clothing with an insect repellent containing permethrin can reduce the risk of being bitten by a tick, the article states. Dill said on the show that only 10–20 percent of deer ticks in central, Down East and northern Maine carry these debilitating diseases, though the percentage is higher in southern Maine. Testing of ticks for diseases can be helpful in clarifying what, if any, treatments should be given to a person who has been bitten by a tick. The piece mentioned UMaine Extension’s Tick Lab will offer tick testing for a modest fee beginning in January. The Sun Journal also published the article.