In this episode, Sarah speaks with Canadian entomologist Janet Sperling, who specializes in tick microbiomes. Sarah sets the stage with a quick history of Lyme disease, including how it got its name and how long it’s been around. We’ll find out why it’s important to know the different kinds of ticks found in Canada and what habitats they need to survive.
Janet Sperling explains how ticks are able to stay attached for days and how they transmit pathogens to us. Did you know ticks can travel thousands of miles on birds? That’s one of the reasons keeping track of them from year to year can be very challenging. Janet also explains why it’s difficult to know the true number of Lyme cases in Canada.
Janet notes that ticks can live in our own backyard, and gives us some landscaping advice to discourage ticks from our outdoor spaces. Finally, Janet fills us in on some of the important research happening in Canada right now regarding ticks and Lyme disease. Thank you Janet for helping us stay informed so that we can stay safe in the outdoors!
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