Lyme Disease & Deer Ticks

NH continues to have one of the highest rates of Lyme disease in the nation and approximately 60% of blacklegged ticks sampled in NH are infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, the bacterium that causes Lyme disease. Although these ticks have a 2-year life cycle, the greatest risk for human acquisition of tickborne diseases is between May and August when the aggressive nymph stage of the blacklegged tick is active. Nymphs are very small (< 2mm) and easy to miss unless they become engorged with blood.

American dog tick, which doesn't transmit Lyme Disease, will probably be active until some time in August (depends on rainfall).

If you suspect a tick has been biting more than a few hours, consider having it identified once you remove it. (Tweezers or forceps can help with the removal.).

To protect yourself:

  • Avoid thick brush and tall grass when ticks are active.
  • Use tick repellent on socks and pantlegs (or legs if you wear shorts).
  • Check yourself for ticks at the end of the day; remember that they can crawl under your clothing, between your toes, and behind or on your ears.
  • Remove attached ticks promptly.