U of G Veterinarian Speaks to CBC on New Tick Hot Spots

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Dr. Katie Clow, a U of G veterinarian and post-doctoral researcher in the Department of Pathobiology, was featured in a Jan. 8 CBC report on Ontario’s tick population.

An expert in the ecology and epidemiology of zoonotic and vector-borne diseases, Clow studies ticks, carriers of Lyme disease.

She told CBC that knowledge of tick ecology is important for predicting where they may turn up. Black-legged ticks, the main Lyme carrier, like forest environments, warm temperatures and an abundant host population, she said. Ticks can be difficult to detect if the population is just getting established, she added.

Using 2017 tick numbers as a baseline, Public Health Ontario is mapping at-risk areas for Lyme disease in 2019. New hot spots are emerging in northwestern Ontario, Hamilton and Simcoe.