Rare Tick Spotted for 5th Time in NJ — Including on a Child
A tick that had been an unknown entity in New Jersey has now turned up for the third time in the past two years.
The state Department of Agriculture confirmed that the longhorned tick was found at the Soldier Hill Golf Course in Bergen County. The spotting at the club makes Bergen the fifth county to have a confirmed sighting. A longhorned tick was also found on a child in the county although the child was not bitten, the state said.
The longhorned tick has also been seen in Hunterdon, Union, Middlesex and Mercer counties. Some of the sightings came as a result of a "Tick Blitz" conducted by the Rutgers Center for Vector Biology.
The tick has also been spotted in New York, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia and Arkansas. The longhorned ticks found in New jersey have all tested negative for "various human and animal pathogens," the agriculture department said. In other states, they have been found on people, dogs, cats and livestock.
"We want to emphasize that it is important that people continue to use normal tick prevention measures for themselves, their pets and livestock," Dr. Manoel Tamassia, the New Jersey Department of Agriculture state veterinarian, said.
Tamassia said the state is working to "develop strategies to control the spread of the tick to other areas." This includes drop-off locations in counties around the state where people can bring ticks they find to be tested and checked. Information about these locations can be found here.
People who find a tick can also call a hotline the state has established at 1-833-NEWTICK.