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Importance of Biodiversity

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A Shared Burden

A Shared Burden

A black-legged tick (Ixodes scapularis) with its head buried in a person.

It's Just A Rash

If you've ever been bitten by a tick or had to remove one from a pet, you know they can be gross little critters. Unfortunately, the problem with ticks is they aren't just gross, they also carry other organisms around like bacteria. So, a tick bite is a definite case of what you don't see can hurt you.

No Duh's and Head Scratchers

If you need help scratching a mental itch, use the resources below:

  1. How does biodiversity act to minimize Lyme disease in humans? Describe this pathway as fully as possible.
  2. Are you surprised that the spread of Lyme disease can be effected without reducing the population of the bacteria that causes lyme disease? Why or why not? Can you think of situations where this sort of information is useful?
  3. Why are female ticks more dangerous than male ticks? How is this related to the life history of the tick? Do you think this information could be useful in preventing the spread of Lyme disease? Why or why not?
  4. How might increases in deer populations be related to increases in tick populations? How would you check to see if this is the case? What kinds of information would you need to gather?

Resources

For many people, the first sign that something is wrong is a rash like this!

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