Friday, January 18, 2008

How big can a forest tick grow?

According to Wikipedia, ticks undergo a lifecycle of several stages. Those we encountered (and got bitten most of the time) are the nymphs (ca. 1-2mm) and some perhaps larvae. So, just how big can a forest tick grow? I was quite intrigued by this question as I never got bitten by an adult one before. Actually, I'd never want to be bitten by one as I can't imagine something as big as the adult dog ticks (ca. 5-8mm) I used to remove from my dogs crawling over and penetrate my skin - unthinkable!

I was lucky enough not to get bitten by any tick yesterday (even when I walked almost the whole reserve, as opposed to the day I last work there - only in a 20m x 20m area) yet caught an adult which was "trying to feed on my pants"!

As big as a dog tick, just flatter and more brownish. My poor North Face Paramount.

Tough sucker, won't let go easily and need to be removed carefully

Rather cute, actually. Now I decide to name it Pantsy (for simple reason).

On it's back and mummified. R.I.P., Pantsy. Never suck pants again in your next life.

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