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What are ticks?

ANSWER

Ticks are related to spiders, so they have eight legs. They have flat, oval bodies that swell when they eat. And they feed on the blood of all kinds of animals, from birds to deer to humans.

They’re also very small. Even adult ticks are only about the size of an apple seed, unless they’ve just fed. That means they’re hard to spot, which is partly why they’re so good at passing along illnesses without getting caught. They’re second only to mosquitoes in spreading disease to humans.

SOURCES:

Medscape: “Tick-Borne Diseases.”

Illinois Department of Public Health: “Common Ticks.”

Purdue University, Medical Entomology, “Ticks.”

CDC: “Life Cycle of Hard Ticks That Spread Disease,” “Geographic Distribution of Ticks That Bite Humans,” “Lyme Disease,” “Symptoms of Tickborne Illness,” “Tickborne Diseases of the United States,” “Anaplasmosis,” “Babesiosis,” “What you need to know about  ,” “Colorado Tick Fever,” “Powassan Virus,” “Other Tick-borne Spotted Fever Rickettsial Infections,” “Tick-borne Relapsing Fever (TBRF),” “Tularemia.” Borrelia miyamotoi

University of Rhode Island TickEncounter Resource Center: “How to Remove a Tick.”

State of Michigan: “Ticks and Your Health.”

The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, “Tick Management Handbook.”

Mayo Clinic: “Lyme Disease,” “Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.”

American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology: “Meat Allergy.”

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on October 28, 2018

SOURCES:

Medscape: “Tick-Borne Diseases.”

Illinois Department of Public Health: “Common Ticks.”

Purdue University, Medical Entomology, “Ticks.”

CDC: “Life Cycle of Hard Ticks That Spread Disease,” “Geographic Distribution of Ticks That Bite Humans,” “Lyme Disease,” “Symptoms of Tickborne Illness,” “Tickborne Diseases of the United States,” “Anaplasmosis,” “Babesiosis,” “What you need to know about  ,” “Colorado Tick Fever,” “Powassan Virus,” “Other Tick-borne Spotted Fever Rickettsial Infections,” “Tick-borne Relapsing Fever (TBRF),” “Tularemia.” Borrelia miyamotoi

University of Rhode Island TickEncounter Resource Center: “How to Remove a Tick.”

State of Michigan: “Ticks and Your Health.”

The Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station, “Tick Management Handbook.”

Mayo Clinic: “Lyme Disease,” “Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.”

American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology: “Meat Allergy.”

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on October 28, 2018

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What kinds ticks can give illnesses to people?

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