Three Letters Re: Deer Ticks – The Threat Within Your Perimeter

Good post about Lyme Disease today. I live in Connecticut and caught Lyme in 1995. Took me years of antibiotics to get it into remission. Also, please note that on 50% of people get the classic “bulls eye” rash. I didn’t, and as a result I was misdiagnosed for five months while it established itself in my neurological system.

I recently purchased some special undergarments from Rynoskin which the ticks and other bugs can’t get though. Maybe some of your readers would be interested. Cabela’s sells their own version, called Bugskins but I’m not as familiar with it.

Keep up the great work. I enjoy the blog out here in Blue country!
All the best, – Joe from Connecticut



I found your post on deer ticks and Lyme Disease of much benefit. I would like to share with you a brief account of a man I knew who contracted a very peculiar illness. He suffered from severe malaise (general weakness) which was misdiagnosed by the local doctors a number of times.He was diagnosed with anything ranging from influenza to Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever and even cancer. As it turned out, he had Lyme disease contracted via a deer tick

His symptoms were not much different from what Bill S. described in his letter but apparently at the time, it was not recognized for what it was. there was as much early suspicion of Lyme disease as there is now.
My point is that we cannot be too cautious when it comes to our health. even with competent doctors, things can get missed.
This gentlemen endured quite a long recovery, partly due to lack of early recognition and partly because Lyme disease is a nasty one. It was years before he was “right” again. – M.D.T.


Hello Mr. Rawles,
The definitive studies on ticks were concluded in Oklahoma some 30 years ago, in detailed deer habitat/population studies. (See the reference below.) The results of the studies indicated that 90% of the ticks occur only in a small portion of the outdoor habitat. Perhaps as little as 5% of the habitat. That particular habitat is the area where deer bed down regularly.

I live on five acres and in contact with the vegetation outside daily, in waist high shrubs, knee high grass and under some heavy growth of trees. Rarely do I find a tick on me, here in western Oklahoma.

Generally the potential occurrence for ticks on humans is overstated. Because people simply do not regularly pass through, work in or visit the bedding areas of deer.

This does not however belittle the fact that just one tick can pass to a human a disease condition that can impact health negatively. Fear of ticks from outside activities is generated when warnings are described to the public. If you stay away from deer bedding areas your chances of having a tick transfer to you are very low.

The other environmental condition for ticks to gravitate to is a yard with outside penned dogs. Watering tanks serviced by windmills or solar pumps for livestock will also be used by deer, bobcats, coyotes and many small mammals. Watering places frequently will have over runs of water leaving behind pools of water on the ground.
These areas may have higher concentrations of ticks.

Beat the odds:

  • Always inspect yourself for ticks after being outside.
  • If you have an outside dog in a fenced yard treat the dog’s sleeping area with insecticides.
  • Stay out of deer bedding habitat.

But for the first time in more than a year yesterday I picked a crawling tick off of my neck heading for the hairline.

If in a bugout situation stay away from deer bedding areas for sleeping or rest stops. You can spot these areas. The deer will leave behind a mashed down area of vegetation [usually] in brush and/or under low trees. You can also see the imprint of where deer rest and sleep under trees where there is less vegetation.
Distinctive well-used trails will lead to these areas.

Type of habitat that is based on ecological descriptions of a community of plants have a significant effect on the ability of ticks to maintain a population of individuals.

Reference: White-Tailed Deer Utilization of Three Different Habitats and Its Influence on Lone Star Tick Populations, by Carl D. Patrick and Jakie A. Hair, The Journal of Parasitology, Vol. 64, No. 6 (Dec., 1978), pp. 1100-1106. Published by: The American Society of Parasitologists

Understanding ticks is more complex than just understanding the potential for disease transmission. Cordially,- JWC in Oklahoma