Michigan Bug Problems: Ticks and Bed Bugs All Over the State

May 27, 2016

A new species of tick discovered in Michigan can cause serious health issues. Fox10TV reports that the American Dog Tick — also known as the Wood Tick — transmits Tularemia and can cause Rocky Mountain spotted fever.

“They are dangerous,” Danielle Jackson, a veterinary assistant, said. “It can be anywhere. They’re more commonly found in the woods, but they can be in the grass, in your backyard.”

The tick can cause serious health issues including Lyme disease, kidney failure, and muscle problems.

Along with those medical problems, exposure to the tick can even give you a sudden and potentially life-threatening reaction to eating meat.

“Apparently when they bite an animal and then they’ll consume something from that animal later that can pass onto a person,” Ned Walker, entomology and microbiology professor at Michigan State University, said.

According to WLNS, the bug has actually been residing in Michigan for years but is just now gaining attention because of the allergic reaction they are causing regarding the consumption of meat.

Once the ticks bite into an animal like a deer, they contract a carbohydrate called “alpha gal,” which is also found in various meats. When alpha gal is transferred into humans, some people can develop dangerous allergic reactions to those specific meats.

These ticks can survive for more than two years without feeding.

Along with the increase in Lone Star Tick sightings, Michigan has recently been struggling with other bug-related issues.

Michigan Live reports that Detroit holds the status as the worst U.S. city for bed bugs.

Bed bugs — which can lay up to 500 eggs in a lifetime and between one and five eggs a day — are now all over Detroit. For the first time in four years, Detroit now overtakes Philadelphia as the most bug-infested city in the United States.

“Whether it’s on the plane, at their hotel, in a movie theater or riding in a taxi,” Paul Curtis, technical services manager at Terminix, said, “these pests can thrive just about anywhere.”

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