Lone Star Ticks in Puerto Rico
The lone star tick is distributed in more southern areas and has been spotted in the Puerto Rico region. Bites from the lone star tick are painless, and commonly go unnoticed, remaining attached to its host for as long as seven days until it is fully engorged with blood. While it is not a factor in Lyme disease, the lone star tick does transmit bacteria that can cause several types of illness.
Lone Star Tick Habitat
Lone star ticks are found in wooded areas and fields and are more common around homes and buildings in secluded or rural areas. Adults are known to feed on large mammals, especially cattle and white-tailed deer. It is an ectoparasite of a wide range of domestic mammals like cattle, horses, goats, sheep, cats and dogs, and poultry. Humans are also commonly bitten by all active stages. This species is rarely found living indoors, and if found inside, it will generally be discovered on dogs or cats.
Lone Star Tick Behaviors, Threats or Dangers
The lone star tick is known to bite humans, and although they do not transmit Lyme disease, a bite from the lone star tick can cause people to develop an allergy to red meat, including beef and pork. This specific allergy is related to a carbohydrate called alpha-gal and is best diagnosed with a blood test. Therefore, if you suspect you have been bitten, an expert evaluation from an allergist familiar with the condition is recommended.
If you need more information on these ticks, contact your local tick control experts.
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