By Alice Park
It’s a good year to be a tick—and a bad year to be near one. Experts say the tick population is growing in record numbers, which means a potential explosion in tick-borne illnesses. You can blame the acorns for the recent tick boom. Two years ago, acorn-producing trees went haywire and multiplied in number, making a bounty of acorns. That extra food led to a boom in mice the following year.
Which brings us to this summer. Since ticks feed on mice (and people, birds, reptiles and anything that has blood), this is expected to be one of the worst tick seasons in years. The tiny insects transmit at least 15 diseases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including the most common, Lyme disease. There are now other added worries, including Powassan virus, a potentially fatal infection that can wreak havoc on the neurological system, and even a type of tick bite that can make you allergic to red meat.
Read more about on Time.
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