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Bayfield County awarded grant money for tick kits

NORTHWEST WISCONSIN– As we get closer to hunting season, a warning to those who plan to spend some significant time in the woods this fall.

Lyme disease cases in parts of northern Wisconsin are higher than in other parts of the state. That’s according to data from the Wisconsin Department of Health.

The Bayfield county Health Department was awarded funding to improve environmental health and raise awareness about tick illnesses.

That $10-thousand dollar grant from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services helped the county develop tick kits. These kits include tweezers, band-aids, insect repellent, and tick identification cards.

The county has given away about 700 of the kits this year.

Ticks are small, but as Donald Thompson knows.. they can take a big bite out of your health.

“So i never, even thought I had contracted lymes disease, I had never realized I had been bitten” stated Donald Thompson, resident of Barron County.

The Barron County man learned that first hand after a tick bite led to something much worse.

“suddenly I was quite ill and immediately went into the doc and blood tests revealed lymes disease.”

Now, with more and more people headed out to the woods this upcoming hunting season, Bayfield county is taking a new step to keep people healthy.

“It brings greater awareness so the tick kits themselves aren’t going to necessarily prevent you from getting bit from ticks or attaching to your body…but having these tick kits in the community create a greater awareness especially for tourists who aren’t from the area visiting who may not be aware this is an environmental concern.” stated Sara Wartman, director of Bayfield County Health Department

Wartman hopes the kits will help the public better understand ticks and be more cautious when in a wooded area.

Thompson thinks she’s right.

“So anything that brings awareness to the people here such as the tick kits you described, seems like an exceptional idea.”

Kaitlyn Moffett

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