Mid-Missouri worried about 'uptick' this summer

Whether you trek out into the backwoods or are playing in your backyard, it should always be in the back of your mind.

"Ticks tend to be where their hosts are,â?? said Jim Lowe with the Missouri Department of Conservation. â??And if you have a nice tall grassy area or brushy area with lots of field mice and rabbit and squirrels and deer and turkeys, chances are pretty good you're going to have ticks there."

It's been a mild winter, and many folks are concerned about more ticks coming out this summer. The Missouri Department of Conservation says there are thing you can do to stay prepared.

"When you get home from being outdoors, even if you've taken precautions and used repellents and worn long sleeves and long pants, it makes sense to undress and do a good tick check. Use a mirror to check every place, and get those ticks off before they really have a chance to lodge and perhaps to transmit disease organisms," said Lowe.

If you find a tick on you, the Boone County Department of Health says pick it off like this.

"We advise people to squeeze the tick as close to the skin as possible, and pull straight up. That will remove the tick properly,and hopefully get the mouth out of the skin," said Genallee Alexander with the Columbia/Boone County Department of Health and Human Services.

Also, they say, be sure to wash the bite with soap, water, and rubbing alcohol to avoid getting an infection.

Officials with the Missouri Department of Conservation say that although getting a disease from a tick is a possibility, it's not very common, and it's no reason to stay indoors.