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Ticks are small spiderlike creatures (arachnids) that bite into the skin and attach themselves to feed on blood. Tick bites occur most often during early spring to late summer.
Two types of ticks commonly found in the United States and some parts of Canada are deer ticks and Western black-legged ticks, and both types may carry bacteria that cause Lyme disease. But most ticks do not carry disease or cause serious health problems.
Ticks can live in the fur and feathers of many birds and animals. People are more likely to get a tick bite when they are in places where there are many wild animals and birds.
It is important to remove a tick as soon as you discover one. Removing the body of the tick will help people avoid diseases the tick may pass on during feeding.
Last Revised: October 14, 2011
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: William H. Blahd, Jr., MD, FACEP - Emergency Medicine & H. Michael O'Connor, MD - Emergency Medicine
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