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MTT TL
October 26, 2009, 01:38 PM
From a Microbiology Text Book:

"The spread of Lyme's disease can be attributed to the rise in deer populations due to the killing off of predators."

hmmm makes me wonder who has been killing off all the hunters :confused:

Because I would say almost certainly people are the largest predator of deer in the US.

Brian Pfleuger
October 26, 2009, 01:48 PM
I think the reference is to "years past". Deer populations have been increasing in most areas for many decades. The reduction in wolf and coyote populations certainly has some effect. Recent studies by QDMA (I believe it was their study) suggest that in areas with high coyote populations deer lose 60-75% of their fawns to predation in the first 6 weeks. That said, the increases in suitable habitat, intentional and otherwise, has more to do with the population increases than any other factor.

However, I agree that in most areas humans are far and away the top predator of not just deer but pretty much anything larger than a mouse.

On the Lyme disease front, personally I don't even think about it. Rare, rare, rare in these parts.

2DaMtns
October 26, 2009, 02:59 PM
It all depends on where you're from I guess. Where I spend my time, we never have to worry about Lyme Disease. If you live in Lyme, Connecticut, it's probably a different story. Regardless of where you live, tick protection is the key and is a good idea. I think ticks have also increased, although I doubt there are any studies on their numbers. I think I saw more this year than I ever have before.

MTT TL
October 26, 2009, 03:14 PM
We had been going on family hikes every weekend but had to give it up over the summer. We were coming back with 20-40 ticks every time despite a number of remediation measures. This is in the KS-MO area.

Uncle Buck
October 26, 2009, 09:01 PM
Ticks do seem thicker this year, but if I remember correctly, the tick has to be on you for at least 24 hours before you run the chance of getting any disease.
Key to remember is to check yourself very thoroughly after each trek in the woods or fields. A nice hot shower and get your spouse, or someone, to check you where you can not see. Some of these things are so small, they just look like a speck of dirt.
Remember, if the tick has had time to burrow his head into your skin, do not pull it out. Coat the tick with fingernail polish, or Vaseline. This stops it from being able to breath and he will back out. Stick the little bugger in a plastic sandwich bag and put it in the freezer. If you do not develop a rash in a few days, then toss it out.
If you do develop a rash, get to the doctors office and bring the tick with you. The doctor has a better chance of finding out if it is lime disease by looking at the insect that bit you.
Had a young lady near us find a tick a week after she had been in the wood and developed a heck of a rash. She still suffers from muscle ache, fatigue and weakness. When I asked why she did not have her mom look for ticks, she said she was embarrassed to think of her mom seeing her "like that."

bamaranger
October 29, 2009, 02:10 AM
Brothers,
Lyme disease is BAD news. I personally know 2 college age young adults whose lives were wrecked by this affliction. Both got the bite on social hikes (different times and places) here in AL.

Neither got a timely diagnoses. The young woman is now on her way to recovering, after years of treatment and missed diagnosis. The young man has basically lost his mind and will likely never be the same unless God works a miracle for him and that family. He was a fine young man too. tragic.

If you are in lyme tick country, get educated and take no chances. If that young lady mentioned in another post has not seen someone yet, she needs to ASAP.

NWPilgrim
October 29, 2009, 03:00 AM
I am certain one of my uncles died from Lyme disease about 25 years ago. It wasn't well known at the time, but later after hearing the symptoms it seems exactly what he went through. He never saw a doctor as it seemed like just a bad flu or something. Otherwise he was robust and an avid deer/elk hunter in central Idaho.

Double Naught Spy
October 29, 2009, 04:53 AM
+1 peetzakilla


I think ticks have also increased, although I doubt there are any studies on their numbers. I think I saw more this year than I ever have before.

That's funny. Based on this year and the number of ticks I got on me, I would say the population is dead or close to it here in north Texas and I spent nearly 60 days hog hunting without having a tick problem.

ZeroJunk
October 29, 2009, 06:56 AM
My wife and brother both had Lyme Disease this year and were successfully treated, knock on wood.
You don't want it.

2DaMtns
October 29, 2009, 06:56 AM
Well, ticks are like any other "animal," in that they need proper environmental factors to flourish. If it's been too hot or dry where you are, or too cold, then you probably don't have the numbers. But I have seen dogs this year with dozens of them attached. I agree with the other poster about checking to see if you live in an endemic area and if so, know the types of ticks that transmit the disease and do thorough tick checks after each time you're out in the woods.

ADB
October 29, 2009, 04:49 PM
hmmm makes me wonder who has been killing off all the hunters

Hunters don't cull the herd in the same way natural predators do. Quite the opposite. A pack of wolves or coyotes will catch the oldest and weakest members of a herd, removing sick animals and letting the strongest survive. Human hunters on the other hand aren't limited to killing what they can run down, and they thus tend to look for the largest and best deer. Most hunters who use the meat will also probably avoid an animal that looks unhealthy.

bamaranger
November 1, 2009, 03:27 AM
The only thing that saves me from being carried off by ticks, while spring turkey hunting, or working trails or boundary on the job, are repellents that have the active ingredient PERMETHRIN.

This stuff is used to treat your clothing, NOT your person/flesh. It really works.
I spray up hard, first treatment, then lightly every few days or so, which may not quite be what the directions call for, but it does the job. Chiggers too!

bswiv
November 1, 2009, 04:03 AM
"PERMETHRIN."!!!!!

And it will, if applied correctly, work just as the label says. Holds up for a couple of weeks and will endure a washing.

It also works wonders when used as a repellent on light clothing for mosquitos. Oderless too..........

shortwave
November 1, 2009, 08:22 AM
Both ticks and fleas have been more then abundant in these parts this year. To date, we`ve had two descent frost`s . Was in the woods the other day and pulled three baby ticks off me:confused:. Living in the middle of the woods has a few drawsbacks:rolleyes:. This summer, being very damp, its been a constant fight with the fleas also. The vets. seen record number`s of animals this year having flea/tick problems. Don`t ever remember having to spray yard for either this late in the year.

Double Naught Spy
November 1, 2009, 09:27 AM
Well, ticks are like any other "animal," in that they need proper environmental factors to flourish. If it's been too hot or dry where you are, or too cold, then you probably don't have the numbers.

Then this summer should have been outstanding for ticks here in North Texas. It wasn't overly hot and we certainly didn't suffer drought conditions this year.

For whatever reason, my properties were not seeing the numbers you were seeing.

{human}Hunters don't cull the herd in the same way natural predators do.

True, but mostly because usually don't have to hunt to survive. Otherwise, humans hunting for the purposes of survival will take whatever they can get.

A pack of wolves or coyotes will catch the oldest and weakest members of a herd, removing sick animals and letting the strongest survive.

Not exactly true. They only take the oldest when the oldest are no longer capable of keeping up or defending themselves as well and they have let themselves become the most viable target. The "weakest" include everything from the young to mothers giving birth to sick animals, injured animals, or the old and infirm. When stressed or hungry, they will take whatever they can get, regardless of age or condition.

Keep in mind that the "weakest" may be the one at the moment that failed to move quickly enough, but the animal that fails to move quickly enough may be perfectly healthy, but could be tired, complacent, or simply failed to see the warning signs.

Note that some studies have wolves primarily taking the young and the old, except in cases of mass predation where the average age on the whole is toward the younger end of the spectrum.
http://www.mnforsustain.org/wolf_mech_etal_patterns_of_prey_selection_in_denali.htm
http://www.jstor.org/pss/3803778