Can we call it an uptick? Ideal conditions for ticks


The Minnesota Department of Health warns that the winter we just endured, with its early start and deep snowfall, created ideal conditions for the proliferation of disease-carrying deer and wood ticks.

A news team from FOX 9 took a field trip with specialists as they collected ticks in an effort to gauge exactly how strong the population will be this year. The Health Department expects to have numbers for this season's tick population early next week. In the meantime, people are urged to check themselves – and their pets – for ticks after they spend time outdoors.

“We are anticipating we will have high tick numbers this season,” the department's Dave Schultz told the station. “The ticks basically live in the layer of leaves on the forest floor. When you get snow that just insulates that layer so the deer ticks survive better in that kind of environment.”

The Walker Pilot-Independent urged residents to beware of the insects, and to seek help if they suspect they have been bitten. "The results can be anything from feeling like you have a crummy flu-like illness to being life-threatening if the organisms attack any of your major systems," the story noted.

Ticks transmit diseases including anaplasmosis and erlichiosis that have symptoms similar to Lyme disease, which is the most prevalent tick-borne disease. Someone with fever, muscle pain, severe headache and fatigue could have any of the three. Most tick-borne diseases can be treated with antibiotics.

It's much the same story in Wisconsin, where the Racine Journal-Times reports that ticks have become more abundant as they spread from forested land to the backyards, parks and playgrounds of more densely populated areas.

“Mice and deer and birds can bring them closer,” said Wisconsin Health Services epidemiologist Diep Hoang Johnson. “But we’re kind of moving into tick territory, too, when we build suburban homes on the edges of woodlots and fields. Now we are living right next to them as opposed to when we would only be exposed when we went to the cabin.”

Ninety-five percent of federally reported Lyme disease cases reported in 2012 were in New England, the mid-Atlantic states, Minnesota and Wisconsin, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

This embed is invalid

Next Up

Flickr - state capitol minneosta - Ken Lund

Criminal charges possible for woman who drove on State Capitol grounds

She drove on the sidewalk and lawn, and at one point waved a large "Trump 2020" flag out the window.

training camp

10 things fans should know before going to Vikings training camp

Masks are not required, but strongly encouraged for the unvaccinated.


Cases of COVID-19 linked to Provincetown outbreak found in Minnesota

There have been more than 550 cases linked to the Massachusetts tourist destination since the 4th of July weekend.

Aaron Rodgers

Reports: Aaron Rodgers set for at least one more year with the Packers

Both sides showing signs of optimism just before training camp begins.

Twitter - KARE 11 jeopardy screengrab

KARE 11 crew teases upcoming 'Jeopardy!' cameo

Some familiar local faces will be providing contestants with "Minneapolis News" clues.

Screen Shot 2021-07-26 at 1.41.24 PM

Second victim of deadly crash in Orono is identified

The crash also was fatal for the son of Gophers hockey coach Bob Motzko.

Witzmann and Coleman

Ex-Viking and ex-Gopher could be contestants for Edina's 'Bachelorette'

Michelle Young, a teacher from Edina, is the show's Season 18 star.

Mayo clinic

Mayo Clinic will require COVID-19 vaccines for all its staff

Those who decline will be required to wear masks and socially distance while on campus.

John Thompson

Rep. John Thompson once again rejects calls to resign

He spoke briefly Monday morning at a press conference organized by his supporters.