Staying Tick Free
As hunters, we’re all out in the field during various times of the year, but unfortunately most of us have encountered our fair share of ticks. Not only are they a pain in the butt, but the diseases they carry can be downright nasty!
Interestingly, the lone star tick that has white spot on the back of the female can cause people to develop an allergy to red meat – even fatal at times. The tick has been moving north and the number of cases has been increasing immensely.
According to the Centers for Disease Control, there were 200 cases of Lyme disease in 2000, but 961 cases in 2008. Lyme disease is probably one of the most notable of all diseases. It is a bacterial infection that is spread through the bite of one of several types of ticks. The number of confirmed cases has ranged from nearly 20,000 in 2004 to a high of approximately 30,000 in 2009.
Even when armed all this information, we must do our best to take every precaution possible because, unfortunately, we two-leggers are at great risk. There are many products on the market that claim to prevent ticks, but I’ve found one that works best for me. I use a spray called Sawyer Permethrin. You can buy it at most sporting good stores in their camping section. It is a treatment for your clothing and gear that repels and kills ticks, chiggers and mosquitoes. A precaution – you don’t ever want to spray it on your skin. However, if you treat your clothing before heading out, the results can be amazing. I use it all through turkey season, and also when I’m out hanging stands and checking trail cameras throughout the summer. Sure, you may get a tick or two from time to time, but trust me when I tell you it can be your nest friend in the woods – spring, summer, and early fall.
Simply spray your clothes down when you’re not wearing them, and let them dry. The next time you go out into the field you will significantly lower your risk of pulling off a disease infested tick. As Martha would say…”That’s a good thing.”
Melissa Bachman is an incredibly hardcore and intense hunter – perhaps one of the more passionate hunters you will ever meet.