The Valley News (story here) has an update on efforts to see whether the lone star Tick has made it to Vermont yet – as it will do any day now:
Adult females have a distinctive white star on their backs. Nymphs and adult females are the most likely to bite humans, according to the CDC.
The lone star tick’s most unusual attribute is that it can make its hosts allergic to red meat. Its bite sometimes transmits a sugar molecule called alpha-gal that triggers an allergic response to lamb, pork and beef and, in some cases, other animal products. There is no cure, and the reactions range from eczema and a runny nose to difficulty breathing that can prove deadly.
The tick also carries ehrlichiosis, Heartland virus disease, southern tick-associated rash illness (STARI), Bourbon virus disease and tularemia.