Tis the season for hantavirus, tick fevers

Forget the manufactured scare about tapeworms, it’s time to be alert for real disease dangers if you are outdoors-

I got my first tick the other day while hiking the foothills in the Deep Creeks SW of Pocatello. Despite numerous forays this year, I haven’t seen many ticks — luck? Nevertheless, this is the time of year when ticks are most active, and the number of cases of Lyme Disease from the small deer tick is a silent epidemic in its expanding range. Fortunately, there are few infected deer ticks so far in the interior West. In Idaho the much larger Rocky Mountain wood tick is much more common. Every year they transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever, tularemia, and Colorado tick fever.

This is also the time when hantavirus cases peak as people clean out their cabins, second homes, and outbuildings where deer mice have spent the winter. The mortality rate of this disease is high.

Risk of Lyme, other tick-borne disease peaks in spring. Daily Herald.

Nationwide now, mosquitoes carry West Nile Virus, and, of course, they are often most fierce in late June, depending on the elevation. The percentage of mosquitoes that are infected rises throughout the summer, however. So a bite is more cause to worry in August than in June. I wear long shirts and netting a lot more than I used to.

A new tick-borne disease

Here is something more for our tapeworm-fearing friends to worry about, though it’s doubtful they will-

Emerging Tick-Borne Disease. ScienceDaily