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  1. #1
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    Ticks are hard to kill, but if they really piss you off--biting them works.

    Spring comes, and I'll be riding--and so will the wood ticks. Hanging out on the leaves and branches alongside the mud-holes blown out deep by the ******* four-wheelers. I gotta ride or walk it around the holes, through waist deep thickets, and the ticks get on me. Scientists say the ticks see me block out the sun, and know they've got a big one coming--and let go of their little leafy hold. They many be hoping for a whitetail deer, but I'm what they get. Along with--I hope!--nausea, confusion, and depression.

    With Lyme Disease up in our area now, I've gotta be extra careful to do all I can to avoid the little bahstuds. Here's what I do: Buy cheap pairs of loose fitting white slacks at the Goodwill store, stuff their cuffs inside of my heavy sock tops, spray everything from boot to waist with a cloud of bug repellant containing 20-25% N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide (deet-it'll also go over all upper body exposed skin if it's mosquito and deer fly season), and if I see them on my pants as I'm riding--pull'em off. The white color makes them easy to spot. Using the pants reduces my chemical exposure by two-thirds, I guess, as if it matters.

    This system works pretty good. Typically, a two-hour ride during tick season gets me 3 to 8 ticks that I don't know are wandering around until I'll undressing in the middle of the kitchen floor (no carpets around). Usually, none of the blood-thirsty imps makes it through my skin--but before their population crashes I'll probably be yanking 5 to 10 of them out of my legs, neck, wherever. I haven't yet seen one of the smaller deer ticks that carry Lyme Disease.

    Does anybody else deal with ticks? Any tricks?

    The biting does work, of course. Years ago, before deet, I was bushwhacking through thick brush along a stream, and started picking up whole nurseries. I'd look down and see 12 on my arm. Over and over. It was eeiry. The ticks'd be racing for cover while I was trying to flick'em off, and I finally got out-of-patience and decided to kill them all. They go SNAP! between your teeth, you spit'em out, and move on. Not a bad flavor; not good either. Sort of peppery.

    Thanks, in advance, for your modern day advice.

  2. #2
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    Nasty little suckers

    You probably know this already, but if they have attached themselves to your skin, don't grab and squeeze the body as you're tring to remove them. That just forces the gut contents (and the borrelia bacteria that causes lyme) into your system. The ticks actually "screw" themselves into you (and animals) in a clock-wise direction, so as you're pulling up give them a counter-clockwise spin and they should come out easy. We have this nifty little tool that is basically a big plastic hook with a split in the end that fits nicely around the tick's head and holds it while you pull up and counter-cw. You might be able to find something similar at a local vet's office, or maybe at a camping store?

    Check the bite site carefully for anything dark left behind (that'll be mouth parts and should be dug out) and give it a good clean with something anti-bacterial, like chlorhexidine (Hibitane) and watch it for a couple days to make sure it's healing well.

    DEET's nasty shtuff but it sure works good.
    Better living thru chemistry.

  3. #3
    Kearsarge crawler
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    What I heard.

    I haven't tried this and don't know if it is true. I was told that if a tick has bored into you that you can make them back of with a dab of vassoline. Apparently this person claims that when the tick is bored in it had to breathe through it's a$$, he says put vassoline on it's a$$ and it will back out because it can't breathe...i'll try it this year.

  4. #4
    mtbr member
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    Old-wives tales

    There are so many old-wives tales out there for ticks - gasoline, vasoline, alcohol of any sort, burnt out matchstick....feel free to try any and let us know if they actually work - I've even tried injecting local anesthetic into the skin right under the tick's head to see if it would numb up enough to fall out (didn't work).
    Better living thru chemistry.

  5. #5
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    Before deet?...

    Quote Originally Posted by Weismueller
    Spring comes, and I'll be riding--and so will the wood ticks. Hanging out on the leaves and branches alongside the mud-holes blown out deep by the ******* four-wheelers. I gotta ride or walk it around the holes, through waist deep thickets, and the ticks get on me. Scientists say the ticks see me block out the sun, and know they've got a big one coming--and let go of their little leafy hold. They many be hoping for a whitetail deer, but I'm what they get. Along with--I hope!--nausea, confusion, and depression.

    With Lyme Disease up in our area now, I've gotta be extra careful to do all I can to avoid the little bahstuds. Here's what I do: Buy cheap pairs of loose fitting white slacks at the Goodwill store, stuff their cuffs inside of my heavy sock tops, spray everything from boot to waist with a cloud of bug repellant containing 20-25% N, N-diethyl-m-toluamide (deet-it'll also go over all upper body exposed skin if it's mosquito and deer fly season), and if I see them on my pants as I'm riding--pull'em off. The white color makes them easy to spot. Using the pants reduces my chemical exposure by two-thirds, I guess, as if it matters.

    This system works pretty good. Typically, a two-hour ride during tick season gets me 3 to 8 ticks that I don't know are wandering around until I'll undressing in the middle of the kitchen floor (no carpets around). Usually, none of the blood-thirsty imps makes it through my skin--but before their population crashes I'll probably be yanking 5 to 10 of them out of my legs, neck, wherever. I haven't yet seen one of the smaller deer ticks that carry Lyme Disease.

    Does anybody else deal with ticks? Any tricks?

    The biting does work, of course. Years ago, before deet, I was bushwhacking through thick brush along a stream, and started picking up whole nurseries. I'd look down and see 12 on my arm. Over and over. It was eeiry. The ticks'd be racing for cover while I was trying to flick'em off, and I finally got out-of-patience and decided to kill them all. They go SNAP! between your teeth, you spit'em out, and move on. Not a bad flavor; not good either. Sort of peppery.

    Thanks, in advance, for your modern day advice.
    you must be freakin old and I'm 50 and been using deet for a loooong time.

    Personally here in so. Maine I just spray myself with deepwoods off and when done riding take a shower. I also have my wife check me overNo problem ever(knocks on wood).

    Had a couple of friends get lyme disease and it wasn't very fun, but they'd neglected to spray themselves.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by minkhiller
    I haven't tried this and don't know if it is true. I was told that if a tick has bored into you that you can make them back of with a dab of vassoline. Apparently this person claims that when the tick is bored in it had to breathe through it's a$$, he says put vassoline on it's a$$ and it will back out because it can't breathe...i'll try it this year.
    Ticks don't breathe through their mouths or butts, but rather through many little openings, called spiracles, located along their exoskeletons. I suppose the vaseline might still smother them, though, if you got really good coverage. However, if even one little spiracle is open to a little bubble of air, it can last a long while. I don't think their metabolic/respiratory needs are very high; they'll certainly hang on underwater almost indefinitely.

    Man, I hate those things. Worst I've ever seen was while doing field research in the coastal sage scrub in So. Cal. You could easily pick up 10 within a few seconds of entering the shrubs. Never did find any great tricks, just vigilance and friends to check your back.
    Last edited by Belfrey; 02-21-2004 at 08:26 PM.

  7. #7
    Unshaven Yak
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    I'm got itchy just reading the caption...

    Only had 2 ticks ever, one dug in my armpit & hung out for a week as a suspected bruise, until I discovered the truth & he wiggled (blech!); the other I managed to nail just as he was getting good grip & I pinched him between my nails after a frantic extraction.

    Having a loved one around to do the burnt needle bit is priceless.

    I suspect one of the more overlooked purposes for having evolved nails as a species, is the extraction & destruction of parasites.

  8. #8
    beer *****es n' bikes
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    I just take a lighter and burn em out. They back out real fast exposed to heat and it burns anything out of the hole I'm thinking. Hurts for a second but so far no lyme disease.
    bike dude, velocity employee (this is my personal account)

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stinky Wiz
    I suspect one of the more overlooked purposes for having evolved nails as a species, is the extraction & destruction of parasites.
    Wow, interesting, you're probably right, considering the social grooming behaviors of other primates. Good call.

  10. #10
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    I have yet to find a tick on me after a ride but i have found plenty while fishing. Last may (which I believe is tick breeding time) I pulled at least 30-40 off of me. I forgot to wear pants just this one time and paid the price. Luckily none were burrowing into my skin so I could pull them off pretty quickly. I hate those little *******s and from now on I just wear pants and have not had a problem. I am not a big fan of deet so I only use it as a last resort.

    Jason

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