Kangaroo Ticks

Submitted: Monday, Sep 30, 2002 at 00:00
ThreadID: 2072 Views:13140 Replies:8 FollowUps:5
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Does anyone have any information on Ticks & the best way to remove them from ones person. Or better still the type of envioronment in which they flourish & the best way to avoid them.
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Reply By: Brett - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
Hi Cam
There are heaps of old wives tails about how to get them out and a few work well. If you have the patience a dab of grease over there body works, but I always seem to rub the grease off or it gets everywhere! It’s not very practical at all. The way my Grandfather showed us and also the way he was taught in the army many years ago was to take the body carefully with tweezers and turn the ticks body anticlockwise for 3/4 of a turn lightly pulling the body at the same time! This does work most of the time but some times the head will remain and will fester like a pimple.
Normal repellents work well on ticks but as they generally drop on you when your walking through scrub they're onto you before the repellent can be of much use! They love to get into the moist areas where we don't put repellent, like the groin, armpits, behind ears and in the hair! I found the best way to keep them off me when we were kids was to send my sister through the bush first!

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Reply By: Member - Sam - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
Cam, a bit of methylated spirits is also supposed to help. The usual method I use is the tweezers though.
AnswerID: 7068

Reply By: Wayne - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
Cam.. my other half is a nurse and we use the alco wipes (those little things they wipe your skin with before you get an injection) to remove ticks. They back out really quickly and you can either use tweezers or flick them off. I dont know how you would go about getting some of these, but if you're in a country town, drop by the nursing post and ask, giving the reason why and you'll probably find they'll give you a couple.
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Follow Up By: Peteg - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
Try your local chemist - I got some of those alco wipes from the chemist when I fitted out my first aid kit.
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Reply By: Melissa Kuipers - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
Hi Cam,
I rode horses as a kid and often got ticks on me as we belted through the bush. The first time, the local hospital advised the using tweezers to turn the tick back on itself, then twist in an anti-clockwise direction whilst tugging slightly. Have never known this method to fail, on horses or myself.

Regards, Melissa
AnswerID: 7074

Reply By: ExplorOz Team - Michelle - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
I'm no tick expert but I have had some experience/knowledge of them. Many animals carry the tick and it cannot live for long without a host body as it needs the blood supply. eg. kangaroo, possum, dog, wombat. Some animals have a greater tolerance than others, and there are various types of ticks and bacterias that they can spread.
Some ticks caused paralysis and even death in some animals (eg. some breds of dogs). Also, some animals can build up a resistence, whereas others will get progressively more susceptible after each tick infection (eg. German Shepherd dogs).However, in the channel country (around Birdsville), there are no ticks and so there is no requirement for chemical treatments. This makes them natually "organic" because there is no use of chemicals at all in either their feed or handling.In farming/grazzing areas where the tick does exists, the Kangaroo is one of the worst carriers of the tick and another reason other than fencing why they are considered a pest to lifestock.Even residential areas such as Sydney are prone to the paralysis tick and dogs, especially pedigrees can die within a few hours of getting a tick. The tick can drop off a moving animal (possums in particular carry them) onto the dog that is chasing them up a tree! or the tick can drop onto a bush or grass that a person or dog can brush up against. The tick quickly burrows itself into the skin and gets right into your blood. The tick will eventually drop off when it is so gorged of blood that it requires no more, but most humans cannot bear the pain and most dogs will die before the tick has got that far.
Depending on how far they have burrowed, there are different techniques. I grew up on the edge of the Kuringai-National Park and our family members did a lot of bushwalking, often bringing home a stay tick on our bodies. In humans they are quickly felt and farily easily removed with the tweezers and a bit of metho. With dogs, much the same treatment, however you must be careful not to snap off part of the tick if it's deeply burried - you must use a magnifying glass to inspect that you have removed the whole body! Interestingly, my mother lives in Sydney (on the edge of the Kuring-gai National Park) recently fell prey to the Rocketsa(?) bacteria spread by a tick that lives only on the bandicoot!! Symptoms were no itch, and no initial knowledge that it existed on her body, broke out in red hive like spots on ear then spread down neck then all over body. 3 weeks later she lacked energy, some dizzyness and recognised a problem. At this point bedridden and undiagnosed for some time as a mystery to doctors then more appearances of the symptoms locally and bandicoot discovered in residental areas. Finally sought antibiotics but very sick by this stage. 2mths later, dizzy spells led to suspected "Menears Disease" but MRI and bloodtests did not agree. Now believed to be residual bacteria from tick! WOW.
AnswerID: 7089

Follow Up By: Exploroz Team - Michelle - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
When I refer to "them" in the paragraph about the Channel Country I am refering to the cattle that are bred there and the beef is certified as "organic".
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Follow Up By: Melissa - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00
Hi Michelle,
My father-in-law suffered from the same symptoms you described for your mother. After many months, an astute doctor finally asked him if he'd been "bitten" by a tick recently. As it turned out, my father-in-law had whilst on holiday in the east. He got antibiotics which helped a little, but it took him literally years to get back to normal. Mostly suffered from ongoing dizzyness and fatigue. Hope your mum is feeling better.
Melissa.
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Follow Up By: Member - Clay - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00
The main tick transmitted diseases of concern are Lyme disease caused by an organism called Borrelia and Tick Typhus caused by an organism called Rickettsia australis. Both diseases may have similar symptoms and both can lead to a chronic illness difficult to treat with antibiotics. Q fever may also be tick-transmitted but this is less common.

It is not a good idea to try and use any chemicals to remove a tick as this may cause it to inject more toxin. Removal as stated above with fine-point tweezers or a tick remover is the way to go. When you have removed the tick completely then the site should be treated with some local antiseptic.

If anybody has more specific questions they can contact me directly on clay.golledge@health.wa.gov.au

Dr Clay Golledge
Senior Consultant in Infectious Disease
QE11 Medical Centre
Perth
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Reply By: Whistling Jack - Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00

Tuesday, Oct 01, 2002 at 00:00
The best method I have used is to tie some cotton around the tick's head. Make sure the front legs are over the knot and pull tight. Pull the two tails of the knot briskly...never fails for me. A small dab of your favourite antiseptic helps to prevent infection. I use this method in my profession.
AnswerID: 7098

Follow Up By: Whistling Jack - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00
I should add...

I usually examine the tick, with a magnifying glass, after removal (its most often still alive) to see if it has a head. Its OK to release these animals in an appropriate manner.
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Reply By: Rob - Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00

Wednesday, Oct 02, 2002 at 00:00
I would like to back Jacks method as the SAFEST way to remove a tick.

With tweezers there is a danger of squeezing the tics body & injecting the poison into your blood stream. Some people are allergic to this poison, like some are to bee stings. My wife Carol is one. We carry anti- histamine in our first aid kit when bushwalking.

We have researched & tried various methods to remove a tic, from using a pair of scissors as a lever to wide gaped tweezers. But the best & safest by far is the piece of cotton looped with an overhand or granny's knot & secured around the tics neck, between the head & body. With a gradual upward pressure the tic will literally pop out.

As Jack has also said tics carry a few diseases these days. The best way to approach bushwalking is to walk in long pants, aeroguard sprayed around the boots & with pants tucked into your socks.
AnswerID: 7118

Reply By: Agatha- Friday, Oct 11, 2002 at 00:00

Friday, Oct 11, 2002 at 00:00
Hi Cam, we are off-roading and do lots of camping. We have two kids and they always have ticks on them. They just drop on you if you roll in the grass or sit under bushes or trees.
By chance, we finally found a solution through our German friends.
We don't want to do business here, but we import now the special designed tick-tweezers. The only thing what really works. Very easy, can't do anything wrong. It doesn't squash the body or the head nor does it leave the mouthparts behind to infect you. You just grab the tick with the special tick-tweezers and turn it 3 times anti-clockwise and pull it out. You get the whole tick all the times and it doesn't hurt. After removal always desinfect the bite site.
It also works on animals. The special tick-tweezers should be in every first-aid kit. Should you be interested in obtaining one, email me.
AnswerID: 7320

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