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Thread: ticks at festivals....

  1. #1
    Registered User T.D.Nydn's Avatar
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    Default ticks at festivals....

    a friend of mine last fall was jamming at a small bluegrass festival ,the next day he shows me a tick he pulled off himself,the bite was on his stomach and was nasty red and black.now,I havn't played a festival in quite some time,probably before there was a tick epidemic,and I admit the little bastiches kind of freak me out,but is this kind of thing common nowadays?do you folks pick up a lot of these buggers at these events ?

  2. #2

    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Ticks and mosquitoes carry some very nasty diseases these days. If I'm going to expose myself for long periods I use a strong DEET spray on exposed skin and a Permethrin spray like Sawyer's on shoes and lower pant legs.

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    The Amateur Mandolinist Mark Gunter's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    I guess I missed something, haven't heard anything about a "tick epidemic"? Give us the whole story here. "Man gets a tick on his stomach" . . . reminds me of the adage, "Dog bites Man" is not news, "Man bites Dog" would maybe be news.

    I grew up in the country, and while nobody likes redbugs or ticks or mosquitoes, they are definitely on this earth and will be nuisance when you encounter them. What's the connection with bluegrass jam/epidemic?
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Ticks are a way of life in most wooded areas and others these days. Supposedly it takes 24 hours embedded for the tick to transmit lyme disease and if you have doxycycline it is easy to kill in it's infancy. One or two pills spaced apart should do it.Tucking your pants into your socks so they stay on the outside of your clothing helps, and checking yourself daily when you are in that environment is a good preventive measure. If you are with your SO it could even be fun
    Last edited by pops1; Jan-15-2016 at 1:22pm.
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    Middle-Aged Old-Timer Tobin's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    It's nothing new in the world of outdoor festivals, although certain areas will have higher or lower counts of the critters as weather/climate dictates. All insects, for that matter, have times where they flourish, and in certain years they may be really bad.

    With Lyme disease being such an issue, though, I would consider ticks to be more than a nuisance. Do whatever it takes to keep them at bay!

    But I recall hearing that DEET products can ruin a mandolin finish, so be careful where you spray the stuff, and don't let it come into contact with your mandolin. Especially from your arms, or from dripping sweat, or even on your clothing.

    Down here, the worst part of being outdoors in the spring is getting chiggers. You don't realize it until it's too late. Oh, the itching!

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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Products with DEET can indeed ruin instrument finishes. I have a large dull spot on the top of my D-28 caused by laying my arm over the top with insect repellent on it.

    In the northeast we are very much aware of the problems with ticks (as is the OP). I've recently started spraying my feet and legs to keep the little critters (not just ticks, I picked up some chiggers last year) off of me. Stay out of tall grass and bushes if possible and you should be fine. It something is uncomfortable don't just assume it's an itch, look at it.
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    Registered User Ky Slim's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    A lot of festivals are held in fields that are mowed or bush hogged just days before they start. There are probably a lot of recently displaced critters around including ticks. I'm not sure I would call it a tick epidemic but something to be aware of for sure. Poison ivy can be common in these fields as well. Have fun out there!

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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Ticks are nearly every where. More so in areas of high grass and where mice and deer lurk. Perhaps living in a cement city they may not be an issue. Personally, I would rather be on alert for ticks than live in a cement city. Of course, not everyone feels as I do.
    I'm not certain that ticks are bluegrass afinados.

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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Probably due to warmer start of winter but I found a tick on my jeans the week before Christmas here in North Carolina.

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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Ive lived in the country my whole life, never became a problem until fairly recently.Its been declared an epidemic up in this neck for some time. I know playing " foggy mountain breakdown " on the banjo keeps them at bay.....

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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    We can pick them up in our mowed lawn, They get on the animals, dogs and cats and get into the lawn. As was stated there are times when they are not too much of a problem and times when they are a huge problem. I think when they quit burning the forests every year to control the underbrush it allowed the tick population to over time explode.
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    I'm going to Wintergrass in a few weeks...if I get ticks at the Hyatt I'll be ticked off!!!

    Kirk
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    Moderator MikeEdgerton's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    I grew up in Portland and never saw a tick on the western side of the mountain. (Kirk is from Portland, he knows what mountain I speak of )
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    I had to google chigger. never heard of them before now.
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Growing up in Louisiana, we had both ticks and redbugs (chiggers), and mama would check us at the door when were little kids, and pick the ticks and redbugs off before we went into the house. I'm not minimizing the discomfort nor danger of disease that can come from blood-sucking insects, just news to me that there's a tick epidemic at bluegrass festivals - or that someone getting a tick on himself at an outdoor festival would come as a surprise. I guess it's a matter of culture and locale that shapes our perceptions.
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry Wilson View Post
    I had to google chigger. never heard of them before now.
    I never knew what they were before I got the damn things.
    "Bargain instruments are no bargains if you can't play them". These are the words of J. Garber.

  30. #18

    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    One of my younger aunts had "tick fever" (that was what their doctor called it) back in the 1930s. She was a child and it messed her up pretty bad. Some of it never did clear up, like the arthritis (at 5 years of age, not normal for a child to suddenly develop arthritis in multiple joints).

    All these years I had mistakenly assumed that "tick fever" and "Lyme disease" were the same thing, but according to ehow.com they're two different things, although both caused by things that ticks transmit via bites. If I've read this stuff correctly, the page claims that Lyme disease is caused by a bacteria so antibiotics are effective against it, whereas it says that "tick fever" is caused by a virus - if that's true then antibiotics wouldn't work, because antibiotics don't kill viruses (also here). Ok so anti-viral then, but oh wait this page claims that antiviral drugs are targeted to specific viruses, I don't see tick viruses listed there (although that doesn't mean it doesn't exist, maybe I just didn't research it enough).

    More reasons to use bug-repellent etc: chronic Lyme disease. Chronic means you're stuck with it for life so you might as well get used to it. Among the possible symptoms:

    "Neurological problems that may occur with chronic Lyme disease include the perception of numbness and tingling, itching, vibrations and burning or crawling sensations. Other symptoms can include facial nerve palsy (Bell's palsy), headaches, aseptic meningitis (a non-infectious inflammation of the membranes around the spinal cord and brain), encephalitis (an inflammation of the brain) or encephalopathy, which is exhibited by memory loss, anxiety, panic, depression or cognitive problems. ........ [also] inflammation in the heart's lining (pericarditis). According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, Lyme disease may cause long-term heart problems such as heart failure." (ehow.com)
    Even (or perhaps especially) nowadays, I can see the potential for something like that to not be treated in time and become chronic, given that (for a variety of reasons) people sometimes put off going to doctors for anything less than some obviously-emergency thing.

    Prevention sounds like a very good idea. Other people above have posted good ideas as to prevention.
    Last edited by JL277z; Jan-16-2016 at 3:59am. Reason: Added quote.

  31. #19

    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    I grew up in Florida and there were ticks, but not the epidemic of them that I see today. We moved to MN in 95. There is actually a tick season here. May-July. The ticks in the Midwest are really bad. If you are careful and spray your pants legs with spray it helps keep them off.
    Also that insect repellent is some finish eating stuff. My mom sprayed herself one time while sitting at her organ and some got some on the keys and the stuff put little holes in the keys. The keys had to be replaced it was so bad. So watch where you spray insect repellent.

    Steve

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  33. #20

    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Interesting thread! We were on holiday in Germany last summer and were also warned about a massive tick problem in a local forest area.

    Probably a stupid question, but do you folks in the rural areas of the U.S. also have to be careful with snakes? I know you get rattlers, cotton mouths, etc but what's the real likelihood of actually encountering one in the wild, and potentially stepping on one by accident?

  34. #21
    Middle-Aged Old-Timer Tobin's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Yes, rattlesnakes are a very real and very common threat, at least where I live. I have killed my share of them. I usually prefer to live and let live, but I cannot let my horses get bit.

    But the biggest pest here in my area is the scorpion. They have an amazing ability to infiltrate small openings and get in the house, in your shoes, in your sock drawer, in your bath towel, in your bed, etc. They are hard to see until it's too late. I have a black light flashlight that I use to search them out when it's dark. They glow bright green under a black light.

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  36. #22
    Registered User T.D.Nydn's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    To answer the snake question ,not even much of a concern up here, I have spent almost 45 years looking for timber rattlesnakes in upstate new York and have found very few,consider yourself lucky if,you find one,just dont get within 5 feet of one! I'm also in morning as a pet snake I had just died after having her for 18 years,!

  37. #23
    its a very very long song Jim's Avatar
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Probably a stupid question, but do you folks in the rural areas of the U.S. also have to be careful with snakes? I know you get rattlers, cotton mouths, etc but what's the real likelihood of actually encountering one in the wild, and potentially stepping on one by accident?
    Rattlers are very common in my part of the world and there is some danger of stepping on one that is sleeping/sunning itself. Crowded festivals would scare them away though, they are very shy animals. Worst snake bite I've seen happened in a 7/11 parking lot, the victim said it was under the trash bin and bit him when he went to throw away some trash. Most of the snake bites I've seen (I work in a Hospital) have involved people harassing the snake. I kill them when they are a danger to my animals and one that was under the outhouse at he State park down the road from me. Usually when I see them they are going the other way fast.
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  39. #24
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    I live in So Cal and never saw a tick until I took a walk in the woods once in North Carolina. It was way up on my back and I was convinced it had dropped on me from a tree. While we don't seem to have many ticks here, we do have black widows in nearly every corner.
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    Default Re: ticks at festivals....

    Try spraying yourself with Avon's Skin So Soft dry oil, this will keep them away. NFI.
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