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Missourians asked to mail in ticks for research

American dog tick.jpg
Posted at 2:15 PM, Apr 07, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-07 15:15:15-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo.  — Next time you take a walk in the wilderness, researchers are asking you to save any ticks that may stick to you and mail them in.

Missouri Department of Conservation and A.T. Still University in Kirksville are partnering on a two-year research study to try to determine the presence of tick species in the state and any disease-producing agents they may have.

According to a news release sent out by the MDC, Missouri is home to three common species of ticks that bite humans: lone star tick, American dog tick, and deer tick.

The study will begin in April and conclude in September 2022.

“We need the help of many Missourians around the state,” MDC Ecological Health Unit Science Supervisor Matt Combes said in the release. “Participation by many ‘citizen scientists' is vital in helping us collect enough data at a scale unattainable by MDC and University scientists alone.”

People are asked to place each live tick in a plastic zip-top bag with a piece of damp paper towel or moist cotton ball, then fold the bag and place it inside another plastic zip-top bag with a completed sample-submission form.

More information can be found on the MDC website.