A tick that bites humans and is linked to a variety of diseases is rapidly expanding its reach in the northeast.
The amblyomma americanum tick, known as the lone star tick, is generally found in the southern states, especially the southwest.
The name comes from the white dot on the female’s back, and is not named after Texas, where they are common. (See image above).
It is one of the four types of ticks found in the region that can transmit disease to humans along with deer, dog, and groundhog ticks. The lone star tick is similar in size to the deer tick, about one-eighth of an inch long.
Already abundant on Long Island, lone star ticks are reported throughout New York State. In Connecticut, cases have been documented in Fairfield, New Haven and Litchfield counties, with the highest increase in Fairfield County.
Lone star ticks do not transmit Lyme disease, but they can transmit other serious viral and bacterial diseases. They can also cause an allergy to red meat.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the highest risk of being bitten exists from early spring to late fall, describing the lone star tick as “a tick very aggressive that bites humans. “
Nymphs and adult females most frequently bite humans, the CDC said.
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