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Tick Surveillance Update for Water Year 2019-2020
March 2020 Update

During February, laboratory staff continued surveillance for adult Ixodes pacificus (Western black-legged ticks). Ticks are collected by dragging a 1 meter square sheet of white flannel over the vegetation alongside trails. Ixodes pacificus ticks will be tested for the presence of bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, the causative agent of Lyme disease, as well as Borrelia miyamotoi and Anaplasma phagocytophilum. Parks and neighborhoods that were surveyed in February were Butano State Park near Pescadero, Año Nuevo State Park and trails near the Costanoa resort near Pescadero, and neighborhoods in Hillsborough. Additionally, laboratory staff conducted tick surveillance at several schools adjacent to tick habitat in Portola Valley, Pacifica, and Montara. Adult tick surveillance will continue through March, and nymphal tick surveillance is planned for spring.

Tick Collections from parks and neighborhoods 2019-2020 Winter Season, YTD

Park/Neighborhood

Nearest City/Town

Number of Ix. pacificus

Los Trancos Woods

Portola Valley

300

Año Nuevo State Park

Pescadero

312

Costanoa

Pescadero

31

Spencer Lake

Hillsborough

153

Bluebell Lane

Hillsborough

273

La Honda Open Space Preserve

La Honda

37

Butano State Park

Pescadero

226

Junipero Serra Park

San Bruno

20

Laboratory staff Angie Nakano and Tara Roth met with Dr. Scott Smith’s Parasites and Pestilence class at Stanford University to survey Wunderlich Park in Woodside and educate students about ticks and tick-borne disease on February 29. The students and staff members collected ticks along trails together, observed and sorted them in the park. These ticks will be tested in the District laboratory and included as part of the seasonal tick surveillance. 

Commands