Ticks and Lyme Disease
Ticks are found primarily in wooded and grassy areas such as the New Forest but you could be exposed to ticks whenever you are outdoors and enjoying the countryside, even in your garden or the local park. Ticks feed on the blood of animals such as deer, particularly in the late spring and early summer. A bacteria that causes Lyme Disease can live in the gut of ticks. Most ticks do not carry the bacteria but infection could be passed on to people bitten by infected ticks. The following points will help keep you safe.
- you can reduce the risk of tick bites by walking on clearly defined paths, using insect repellent and performing regular tick checks
- some tick bites can result in infection so it is important to remove ticks as soon as possible
- ticks can be removed safely with tweezers or a tick removal tool
- if you have been bitten or recently spent time outdoors and start to feel unwell, contact your GP
You can view a copy of our tick leaflet [2Mb] here which gives practical advice on protecting yourself from ticks as well as guidance on what to do if you have been bitten.