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Numerous events planned around Rhode Island for Tick Control Awareness Day, June 2


Rhode Islanders can learn how to control ticks in their yard, prevent tick bites, protect pets from ticks, and receive discounts on tick repellents at an extensive series of events planned in recognition of the state's second Tick Control Awareness Day on Saturday, June 2.

"With Lyme disease an increasing hazard in Rhode Island and deer ticks spreading northward throughout the region, I am pleased that the General Assembly proclaimed June 2 Tick Control Awareness Day," said University of Rhode Island Entomology Professor Thomas Mather, director of the URI Center for Vector-Borne Disease, who is coordinating tick control events around the state with URI tick researcher Nate Miller. "Lyme disease costs Rhode Island citizens between $10 and $30 million every year" Mather added, "but by building awareness about the ready availability of simple tick-bite prevention solutions, Rhode Island can lead the nation in reducing the impact of ticks and tick-transmitted disease."

The featured event on June 2 will be a tick control workshop at Goddard Park in Warwick from 10 a.m. to noon where Miller, Mather and other experts will demonstrate tick control products and services. At the workshop, physicians will provide information about what to do if you are bitten by a tick, veterinarians will address questions about protecting pets from ticks, and entomologists will be available to identify ticks brought to the site by local residents. In addition, demonstrations will be held on the application of clothing-only tick repellents.

Other activities for Tick Control Awareness Day include the following:
  • In 1993, at least one nymphal deer tick was collected at just 60% of the 80 sampling sites, while in 2006 ticks were collected at all 61 sites sampled (19 sites were dropped in 2000 to save costs).
  • In the first year of the survey, an estimated 275,000 Rhode Islanders were at risk for encountering these ticks where they live. That number is now above 717,000.
  • National Park Service tick expert Howard Ginsberg will discuss how to avoid ticks in the woods at Trustom Pond National Wildlife Refuge in South Kingstown at 11 a.m.;
  • Wildwood Outfitters in Wakefield will demonstrate how to apply clothing-only tick repellents at 10 a.m. and 2 p.m.;
  • Effective methods for killing ticks will be demonstrated at Colt State Park, Bristol at 1 p.m.; and
  • URI tick experts will demonstrate tick control products and services in a backyard setting at 11 America Way, Jamestown at 3 p.m.
In addition, discounts will be offered on the purchase of tick repellents and other products on June 2 and 3 at Dick's Sporting Goods in Warwick and Smithfield, Allen's Seed in Exeter, and Wildwood Outfitters in Wakefield. Agway in Exeter and Westerly also have featured tick control products for sale.

For more information about Tick Control Awareness Day or any of the events scheduled, visit or contact Mather or Miller at 401-874-2928.

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