Tick Management

And Alpha-gal Syndrome

Controlling Deer Populations

White-Tailed Deer: the Primary Host of the Lone Star Tick

Deer are the primary host of of Lone Star Ticks, and can move ticks long distances quickly. Both the explosion in Lone Star Tick populations and the expansion of their range has coincided with an explosion in deer populations (1,2,3,4,5,6,7), described by Paddock and Yabsley as “ecological havoc.”

  • A single white-tailed deer can be infested by thousands of Lone Star Ticks (5).
  • The strong correlation between the number of white-tailed deer and numbers of lone star ticks has been demonstrated by mathematical models and by deer exclusion studies in various locations (5).

Managing Deer Populations

We can’t address the AGS epidemic without addressing deer overpopulation. We need to:

  • Actively reduce deer populations.
  • Manage habitat to reduce deer populations, rather than increase them as is often the case when land is managed for hunting.

Managing Ticks in Your Yard

You can find recommendations for controlling ticks in your yard on the following websites. However, some or all of these techniques may not have been proven effective for controlling Lone Star Tick populations.

CDC: Preventing Ticks in the Yard
TERC: Protect Your Yard

More Information about Tick Management

References–in development

1. Molaei, G. et al. “Bracing for the Worst — Range Expansion of the Lone Star Tick in the Northeastern United States.” (2019). N Engl J Med; 381:2189-2192

2. Monzón, J. D., et al. (2016). “Population and Evolutionary Genomics of Amblyomma americanum, an Expanding Arthropod Disease Vector.” Genome Biology and Evolution 8(5): 1351-1360.

3. Raghavan RK, et al. Peterson AT, Cobos ME, Ganta R, Foley D (2019).  Current and Future Distribution of the Lone Star Tick, Amblyomma americanum (L.) (Acari: Ixodidae) in North America. PLOS ONE 14(1): e0209082.

4. Lone Star Ticks in New Jersey: Risk, Ecology, and Prevention. Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station.

5. Paddock CD, Yabsley MJ. Ecological havoc, the rise of white-tailed deer, and the emergence of Amblyomma americanum-associated zoonoses in the United States. InWildlife and emerging zoonotic diseases: the biology, circumstances and consequences of cross-species transmission 2007 (pp. 289-324). Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg.

6. Platts-Mills TA, Commins SP, Biedermann T, van Hage M, Levin M, Beck LA, Diuk-Wasser M, Jappe U, Apostolovic D, Minnicozzi M, Plaut M. On the cause and consequences of IgE to galactose-α-1, 3-galactose: a Report from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease Workshop on Understanding IgE-Mediated Mammalian Meat Allergy. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 2020 Feb 10.

7. Springer YP, Jarnevich CS, Barnett DT, Monaghan AJ, Eisen RJ. Modeling the present and future geographic distribution of the lone star tick, Amblyomma americanum (Ixodida: Ixodidae), in the continental United States. The American journal of tropical medicine and hygiene. 2015 Oct 7;93(4):875-90.

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