Are Ticks Turning Predatory?


From one of the planet’s most notorious
parasites to a number of cases in which its bite has caused severe damage, join us today
as we ask are ticks turning predatory? Number 5 Lee Farmer
British professional outdoor instructor Lee Farmer had braved the world’s most dangerous
jungles and even climbed Mount Everest. In May 2015, he led a team of mountaineers
through the Nepalese Himalayas. Then, by the end of June, by his own admission,
he was “as weak as a kitten”. Farmer had contracted Lyme disease after being
bitten by a tick, close to his home in North Wessex Downs. The disease is caused by the Borrelia bacterium,
for which ticks are vectors. Symptoms include headaches, muscle and joint
pain, extreme fatigue and sensitivity to light and sound. The bullseye rash around Farmer’s bite kept
growing and soon he started feeling severe pain in his muscles and kidneys. After being diagnosed, his doctor placed him
on strong antibiotics thus commencing his road to recovery. Next up, a two-year-old boy is left fighting
for his life after a tick bite but, first, let’s find out more about these deadly bloodsuckers. Ticks are small creatures, from 0.1 to 0.2
inches long, which belong to the Parasitiformes order. Their life cycle has four stages from egg
to larvae, to nymphs and then adults. To survive and move from one stage to the
other, ticks feed on the blood of mammals and birds as well as some species of reptiles
and amphibians. An adult tick’s body features two segments
and legs tipped with claws. The anterior part is retractable and contains
mouthparts adapted for piercing through skin. As the tick’s pear-shaped body becomes engorged
with blood, for some species, it may increase its weight up to 600 times. Ticks are extremely resilient creatures and
may go without feeding for up to 18 weeks and survive in near-vacuum for as long as
half an hour. These creatures are also known carriers of
diseases which can be transmitted to humans, with potentially fatal consequences. Before we continue with our list, answer this
question. Which of these animals belongs to the same
animal class as the tick? Is it the
a. Mosquito
b. Dragonfly
c. Scorpion
d. Flea
Let us know what you think in the comments section below and stay tuned to find out the
right answer. Number 4 Jackson Oblisk
Kaya Oblisk, from Kentucky, US, came close to living every mother’s worst nightmare,
after her two-year-old son was bitten by a tick. Her son, Jackson, developed a potentially
deadly disease called Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Light pink spots formed all-over his body
and he couldn’t move, eat or drink. Jackson would also scream in pain whenever
anyone tried to touch him. Oblisk rushed her son to the hospital, as
his fever had spiked to over 105 degrees. If she’d waited any longer, he could have
succumbed to organ failure. After he was diagnosed with the disease, Jackson
went into a coma for nearly a week. He was treated with antibiotics and woke up
on the day of his second birthday. Complications from Rocky Mountain spotted
fever may include partial paralysis or the development of gangrene requiring amputation
of the arms, legs, toes or fingers. Before moving on to our next listing, involving
a 5-year-old girl left temporarily paralyzed by a tick attack, let’s see where we might
find ticks in the wild. Ticks have been around ever since the Cretaceous
period, 146 to 66 million years ago. Specimens have even been found preserved in
amber, along with dinosaur feathers. This would indicate that the tick has also
been a parasite of dinosaurs. Nowadays, ticks enjoy a global distribution
and tend to be found where their host species occur. They may also move across various areas as
parasites of migratory birds. Ticks prefer warm, humid climates because
they need a certain degree of moisture in the air when they undergo metamorphosis. Most tick species are split into two families
– hard ticks, also known as Ixodidae and soft ticks, or Argasidae. The difference is that hard ticks have a dorsal
shield and their mouthparts are in a beak-like formation at the front, instead of on the
underside, of their bodies. While most ticks prefer to lie in tall grass,
those from the Hyalomma genus are known to live in harsh desert conditions. Because host organisms are hard to come by,
these creatures tend to be more aggressive when a potential host is sensed. Number 3 Averey Mell
While the vast majority of tick-related diseases come from pathogens, there’s also one that
these creatures can cause on their own. It’s called tick paralysis and it’s caused
by neurotoxic compounds in the creature’s saliva which are transmitted to the host. When Ohio native Averey Mell arrived at the
Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, doctors were unsure what was making her sick. The 5-year-old had fallen on the bathroom
floor and was unable to breathe on her own or feed herself. Then Averey’s mother found two Dogwood ticks
behind her ear, which were reportedly engorged to about the size of a quarter. Tick paralysis usually occurs when the tick
is embedded in the human host for a long time. Averey slowly returned to normal, after the
ticks were removed and no longer transmitting the neurotoxins. Before we move up to some truly startling
tick behavior, let’s check out how these creatures can actually kill you. Perhaps the most remarkable aspect about the
tick is its incredible ability to detect a host. This is done through a unique sensory structure,
known as Haller’s organ, located in a minute cavity on its front-most leg. It can detect odors and chemicals emanating
from the host as well as vibrations or changes in temperature and air currents. Through Haller’s organ, a tick can even
perceive infrared light given out by the host. Some ticks will cling to leaves or grass with
their first legs outstretched waiting to attach to an animal. Others, namely those in the Hyalomma genus,
will even chase down their prey. Once a tick has chosen you as a host, it will
burrow inside your skin, and attach itself firmly. By feeding on your blood, the tick also delivers
pathogens such as viruses, bacteria or protozoa. Additionally, the Australian paralysis tick
can also inject neurotoxic venom. Some of the many tick-borne diseases include
Lyme disease, typhus, Q fever, Rocky Mountain spotted fever or Crimean Congo hemorrhagic
fever. There have been numerous cases in which complications
from these diseases and others have resulted in death. Number 2 Predatory Behavior
According to recent observations, ticks of the Hyalomma genus might be turning predatory
towards humans. As previously mentioned, these ticks live
in rough climates where finding a host can be difficult. It would seem that the Hyalomma ticks retain
their predatory behavior wherever they’re introduced. In July, 2019, Hyalomma marginatum was spotted
in the Netherlands as an invasive species. When engorged with blood, this hard-bodied
tick can grow to 0.7 inches in length, which makes it a giant by tick standards. It was most likely introduced to the country
through seasonal bird migration. Adults tend to prefer large mammals and have
been observed tracking down a meal for hundreds of feet and up to ten minutes. With the abundance of food at their disposal
in non-native environments, the bloodsucking predators could easily spread. That’s certainly bad news since they’re
known carriers of Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever, or CCHF, as well as a number of other
dangerous diseases. Next up, we learn more about CCHF and its
first confirmed victim in the UK. And we’ll see what can be done to prevent
tick-borne infections. So, which creature shares the same animal
class as the tick? The right answer was c, the scorpion. Ticks, just like spiders and scorpions belong
to the Arachnida order. It was named after Arachne, a woman in Greek
mythology who was turned into a spider after challenging Athena, the goddess of wisdom,
to a weaving contest. Physical similarities between various arachnid
species include having eight legs, an exoskeleton and body segments that are fused together. In case you’re diagnosed with a tick-borne
disease, the proper treatment for it will be determined by your doctor. When it comes to Lyme disease, for example,
antibiotics are the primary treatment. Yet, it’s worth mentioning that bites don’t
always lead to infection, particularly if the tick is removed within 36 hours. In the absence of proprietary removal tools,
this can be done with a pair of fine-tipped tweezers. Don’t squeeze the tick, as it may spill
out the contents of its stomach into the wound. Always make sure to remove the tick in its
entirety and clean the wound with soap and water. If you’re walking through infested areas,
wear boots made of smooth rubber and tuck you pants inside. This will make it harder for ticks to latch
on to you. When it comes to controlling the tick population
as a whole, one researched methods is the release of the parasitoid Ixodiphagus hookeri. This wasp species lays its eggs into ticks,
killing them in the process. Guineafowl and opossums are also among the
natural destroyers of ticks. Number 1 First Confirmed CCHF Case in the
UK Crimean-Congo Hemorrhagic Fever is, by all
accounts, a horrifying disease. It’s fatal in roughly 30% of cases. Even in a laboratory setting, CCHF is dangerous
enough to require biosafety level 4, the highest available. It’s a multi-layered security protocol that
involves full hazmat suits and other forms of containment. Initial symptoms of infection include mental
confusion, agitation and mood instability. As CCHF progresses it can cause severe bleeding
which gradually spreads throughout the body. Death can come from liver failure, acute kidney
failure or respiratory failure. There’s no vaccine or treatment for Crimean-Congo
Hemorrhagic Fever. Outbreaks can result from contact with infected
blood or bodily fluids. In 2012, an unnamed 38-year-old man became
the first laboratory-confirmed case of CCHF in the UK. He’d suffered an infected tick bite while
in Afghanistan. The man subsequently died in a military hospital. Anyone who’d sat next to him on the plane
ride to the UK was closely monitored for signs of the disease. Thanks for watching! Would you rather let a tick burrow itself
into your skin and start feeding OR get stung by an Asian giant hornet? Let us know in the comments section below!

100 Replies to “Are Ticks Turning Predatory?”

  1. I live in Texas and had a unusual pain on my thigh. I went outside to smoke a cigarette and sat with my legs up then noticed one of these little bastards burrowed in my skin. I took a lighter to it and after a few seconds it fell off. It had to have been on me for the night because it was full of blood after I squished it. Thankfully it didn't have any disease….

  2. I dont understand how ticks make it into peoples skin. I've had 5 ticks on me in my life, and i felt them immediately when they started to burrow.

  3. I have post treatment chronic Lyme disease and it is absolutely HORRID. I’m so sick all the time from cyclic vomiting, not being able to walk, symptoms of advanced Alzheimer’s to even worse symptoms. Most days I can’t even write my own name or send a text. My daughter is helping me write this comment right now. I got bit planting flowers in my front yard and I live in the suburbs so be careful. You don’t have to be in the woods to get bit. Lyme and it’s co infections is HELL ON EARTH.

  4. I doubt a single tick is planning a strategic attack on mankind. With that being said, I like the tick, love to burrow head first…in vagina.

  5. I had a neighbor who went to have a mole on the back of his neck checked. It had been there there for a few years. Anyway, it was discovered that it was actually a tick, and it had to be cut out.
    He was fine, although he was left with a bit of a hole on his neck.

  6. To remove a tick without accidentally snapping the head off in the wound, grab with tweezers as for down towards the head as possible, then give a quarter turn clockwise and pull out. This should get the whole tick out in one piece. When the head breaks off they vomit back anything that they have in their head and esophagus at the time, greatly increasing risk of disease and infection. Plus, trying to remove the head from the tick wound is very difficult and many times has to be scraped out, making the situation worse.

  7. Lyme's is terrible, especially if it's not diagnosed early, it can cause all kinds of damage to your joints, muscles and nervous system, depending on where it wants to set up shop, and that damage just doesn't go back to normal after you treat the infection, ( diagnosed with a long term infection about a year ago ( doc thinks maybe 10yrs or so) post Lyme syndrome is real, and it sucks, some days you'll feel ok, others you need help just to get out of bed in the morning….( And God forbid you get bit with a carrying tick when you have a Lyme infection already that you don't know about. You'll wish it would kill you. That's how they finally pinned down my diagnosis.

  8. Hornet would kill me but if a tick bit me I then would panic and stroke myself out. Either way I'm dead. Lose lose for me

  9. So sorry, I thought this was a pro-politician video before watching it… I accidentally down thumbed it…. please use scientific name "Ixodes scapularis" thanks <3

    Just kidding, I up thumbed it 🙂

  10. Ticks are disgusting. I've had 2 attached. But when I was growing up. My dad was not quite right , if you know what I mean. He would let the ticks gorge on his dogs. When they were fully engorged , he would then pull them off the dogs . Throwing them against his barn. Just disgusting! I felt bad for the dogs.

  11. Ive contracted lyme disease 2 times. The first time the antibiotics cleared it quickly the second time my doctor kept telling me i was depressed or stressed out…after 6 months of different meds i didnt want or need, they finally did bloodwork and were lije "oh, you have lyme disease, we have no idea how long or how much its progressed" i ended up with chronic lyme.. It took almost 3 years to clear it! Listen to your body!

  12. Perfect timing! I just pulled a tick off my dog, the size of a small bean! I got a pair of needle nose tweezers, got it by the head, and plucked it out. Little bugger left a little plug out of my dogs neck. Made sure I got it all and put some peroxide on the effected area.

  13. When I went to Australia my sister was doing my cousins hair and she seen a tick but it got taken out of her hair I think it was a soft tick(I wanted her to get bitten she was so annoying)

  14. I had a 12 yr old dog that seemed to have a stroke ran it to a vet they found a tick removed it and gave it fluids and IV antibiotics deer tick and it he dog died 8 years later

  15. Too much info for you? I have had a scar on the head of my dick from a tick for 45 years. As a logger i have had hundreds on me but never sick yet.
    Oh shit you mentioned European Hornets,I have been battling Giant European Hornets for 20 years on my property. I put a road flare in my yard at night and hundreds of them fly into the flame….pile of 100's bodies

  16. I have Lymes Disease. Its debilitating and the symtoms the disease gives you range so widely. I was only diagnosed a few months back but ive had the symtoms for years. Still on treatment now which currently isnt doing much. I dont think many people know the dangers of tick bites. Please for your own safety wear trousers and long sleeve shirts if you are planning on going out hiking etc in areas with high populations of ticks. If you get a rash after a bite and it goes away do not ignore it, the symtoms will catch up with you later down the road believe me.

  17. We ticks ampas in the Philippines usually they don’t bite us but they go for our dogs i just pull em out flat ones are harder to kill than the big one

  18. You forgot about 1 disease that's contracted from tick bites called Ehrlichiosis and is normally mistaken for lyme disease but the lyme disease treatment doesn't help and in some cases make it worse. I almost lost my lil brother at 10 years old because of this disease that sounds fake but is very VERY real.

  19. I've never been stung before and I don't plan on it now, so bring on the tick! Also I have a minor phobia of wasps and hornets… So yeah…

  20. I got Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever when I was 7, and at the time when I got it, they told my parents they were lucky to have caught it when they did cause I was at the same exact risks of the 2 year old in this story. And that was back in 2000 – 2001

  21. By definition if it's an organism that sustains itself from the blood of a host organism without killing it. It's a parasite and not a predator. If they can't kill their prey and only feed on them until they're full then it's in no way a predator

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