Study suggests moose tick infestation is widespread

Photo by Pixabay

VICTORIA, B.C. – A study has found that 60% of moose, province wide, have shown signs of hair loss associated with a tick infestation that could be fatal.

Last year, 50% of moose that were observed were infested with winter ticks. The study ran from January 1st to April 30th, 2016. 500 moose were observed.

The province started the moose monitoring system in 2015 to understand the effects of the infestation.

The province says that it does not mean that more moose are carrying the tick, rather ticks are a common problem.

“The higher the infestation rate this year does not necessarily mean that more moose are carrying the tick, although it does suggest that ticks are a common problem. Biologists are entering the third year of an ongoing study and need to collect more data before they can get an accurate picture of winter tick prevalence.”

Winter ticks are no threat to humans. There are around 120,000 to 200,000 moose in BC.