Ticks still looking to bite amid warm March days

PITTSBURGH — While some may assume it’s too early in the year to face a tick bite, experts say the bloodthirsty pests are still a risk to people and pets.

“Right now, when the weather’s nicer, you can start seeing ticks outside,” said Emily Struckhoff, Vector-Borne Disease Program Specialist with Penn State Extension.

Struckhoff explained that ticks have a two-year life span, and so many survive the colder months. On warmer March days, older and younger ticks can be looking to bite, and they can be quite “hungry.”

The feared deer tick can be active and looking to bite whenever the temperatures are above about 40 degrees, Struckhoff said.

Parkgoer Connie Concannon told us she’s always aware of ticks and uses a lint roller to pick up pests after time spent outdoors.

“Last year was real bad so hopefully this year won’t be as bad,” Concannon said.

Struckhoff told Channel 11 that it can be hard to predict if this winter’s temperatures will cause a “worse” tick season.

But, one thing’s for sure, and that’s that the ticks are already out. And more will be born this spring.

People are advised to check their skin and their pets after spending time outdoors. Insect repellants can also keep pests at bay.

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