Don't Believe the Hype, or Panic, About Ticks

May 19, 2017

We’ve been seeing a lot of stories about the incoming deluge of ticks this season. Iowa State University Extension Entomologist Donald Lewis says despite some of that reporting, “nobody should panic.”

“There is no census of ticks. There is no systematic survey. What we have are people’s memories of how good it was last year or how bad it was last year, or how good or bad it was 10 years ago,” says Lewis.

“You hear people say ‘it was a mild winter, so we’re going to have a problem with bugs.' Well, that’s not necessarily true, and we can’t really predict it. Don’t panic. A lot of these articles that are coming out are from the East coast. And a lot of them are coming from people who have a vested interest in there being a large tick populations.”

During this hour of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe talks with Lewis and ISU Extension’s Linda Naeve about spring insects and spring gardening deadlines. They also answer listener questions.