Stone Walls Provide Favorable Habitat for Ticks

News8 reporter, Vanessa Blasi (04.02.2024) published, “Study: Lyme-disease-carrying ticks found hiding in Connecticut stone walls.” Blasi reports findings of the study conducted by the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station which looked at habitat factors connected with increased numbers of blacklegged ticks on  42 properties in Guilford, Connecticut. Researchers determined that grassy areas in proximity to stone walls had almost three times the number of ticks as areas without this habitat feature. It is believed that stone walls provide a more permanent habitat feature for ticks than woodpiles.

Forested areas closest to lawn edges that had leaf litter or understory vegetation, and short-cut lawns next to woodland edges also showed the greatest population of ticks. Interestingly, tick numbers were not influenced when leaf litter was removed, when lawns were left uncut, nor after installation of woodchip barriers at the forest edge. This is important information to help the public understand the increased risk of tick exposures in certain areas outside their homes.

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