Leona Canyon Open Space Regional Preserve

Ticks and Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is an infectious disease transmitted by the bite of a tick. It may be treated and cured with early diagnosis, but if not properly treated it may persist in the body for years.

How to avoid ticks:

1) Wear long pants, long-sleeved shirts, and closed-toe shoes in tick country. 
2) Tuck shirt into pants, and pants into socks. 
3) Stay on trails! Avoid brush and grassy areas. 
4) Use insect repellent on shoes, socks, and pants.

Check yourself, your children, and your pets for ticks frequently and thoroughly!  

What does a tick look like?

In California, the western black-legged tick is the major carrier of Lyme disease. The adult female is reddish-brown with black legs, about 1/8 inch long. Males are smaller and brownish-black. Both are teardrop shaped.  

What are the symptoms of Lyme disease?

Early symptoms may include a spreading rash accompanied by fever, aches, and/or fatigue.  

What to do if you find a tick attached to your skin:

  1. Pull the tick gently from the skin, using a tissue or tweezers (not with bare hands).
  2. Wash hands and the tick bite with soap and water; apply antiseptic to the bite.

Prompt removal of ticks may prevent disease transmission.

Download: Snakes, ticks, poison oak and other wildlife encounters [PDF]

Additional Resources


A tick on someone's thumbnail
Photo courtesy Bay Area Lyme Foundation

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