Surprise: Alaska has ticks, and more are on the way

Image courtesy of the Alaska State Veterinary office.

Maybe you are like me. I assumed that Alaska was too cold to have ticks. But it only took searching out the Alaska State Veterinarian website under the Department of Environmental Conservation Division of Environmental Health to find out I was wrong. Alaska not only has resident ticks, but a current research project through the state veterinarian’s office is trying to pin down if nonresident or invasive ticks have arrived.

While Alaska’s skilled hunters may be very aware of ticks on wildlife, news of newly arriving ticks is important to learn. In addition, dog owners and walkers may need to come up to speed. Alaska’s warming winters and the broader habitat for ticks in the Lower 48 and Canada may provide a channel for rarer types to get to Alaska and survive here.

Join us to find out how the research is progressing, what the findings reveal, how you can participate, and how UAA faculty and graduate students are supporting the work.

As always, your questions and comments are welcome throughout the program. Find helpful links to supporting information in the LINKS section below. Please join us!

HOST: Kathleen McCoy

GUESTS:

  • Dr. Robert Gerlach, Alaska State Veterinarian
  • Brian Davidson, veterinarian at SPCA Anchorage
  • Dr. Micah Hahn, Institute for Circumpolar Health Studies

LINKS:

  • Alaska State Veterinarian information page on ticks, website
  • Ticks the focus of new research in Alaska, Alaska Fish & Wildlife News, 6.2018
  • Alaska’s 6 resident tick species, animals they affect, scroll down webpage
  • Tick identification chart (includes Lower 48 ticks), webpage
  • Tick-borne disease prevalence, prevention, treatment, American Kennel Club Canine Health Foundation website
  • Tuleremia: Fact sheet for pet owners, 2 pg PDF, AK F&G
  • What is the Alaska ‘submit-a-tick’ program, website
  • Where to check for tick surveillance research results, webpage

PARTICIPATE:

  • Call 550-8433 (Anchorage) or 1-888-353-5752 (statewide) during the live broadcast (2:00 – 3:00pm)
  • Send e-mail to hometown@alaskapublic.org before, during or after the live broadcast (e-mails may be read on air)
  • Post your comment or question below (comments may be read on air
  • LIVE: Monday, October 7, 2019 at 2:00 p.m
  • RE-AIR: Monday, October 7, 2019 at 8:00 p.m.