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Mid-state man bitten by more than 250 seed ticks

Posted at 4:17 PM, Jul 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-22 23:52:51-04

DICKSON, Tenn. (WTVF) — A mid-state man was bitten by more than 250 seed ticks.

Furman York says he was helping a friend move a tractor in the woods of Dickson County Friday. But when he got home he noticed the bites all over his leg.

York said the bites are no bigger than the point of a pencil. He has counted more than 250 bites on his lower legs.

"I took him out in shorts and very short shoes and we go out and get his tractor started; and I start walking along the edge of the dirt road and they're pine trees, and I should've known," said York.

In the tall wooded grass was an insect ready to bite, and when he came York said his ankles were itching and covered with tiny dots.

"I had so many I knew I had to get on an antibiotic right away," said York.

UT's Institute of Agriculture says all of the common ticks of Tennessee have four life stages: egg, larva, nymph and adult. The seed tick is the second stage of life. Seed ticks climbs onto the nearest vegetation and waits for an animal or person to pass by and bite.

"At first, I didn't know they were ticks and I looked under the magnify glass and there were the little legs," said York.

York was not wearing insect repellant when he got bit. He was able to scrape off as many ticks as he could but he won't let this one incident take a bite out of his joy for the outdoors.

"Is it going to hold me back, no; it's going to let me know if I take a small trip I'm going to have boots on, I'm going to spray everywhere and I'm not going to make the same mistake twice," York said.

The Center for Disease Control says most ticks can be removed with tweezers, but if a person experiences symptoms like a fever, rash or aches and pains, they should call their doctor immediately.