Wednesday, July 10, 2013
I Want To Check You For Ticks
OK. That is a quote from Brad Paisley's song. And I don't really want to. Use a mirror.
Ticks are bad for us this year. One of the main issues for us, is fields full of uncut grass. Ticks are opportunistic predators and climb out to the end of a stalk of grass. Then, when you brush against the grass...they got ya!
Did you know ticks were related to spiders? So you have a spider that can bury its' head in your flesh and suck your blood. And then they don't have the courtesy to have a meal and move on. No. They LIVE there until they fill up like a miniature balloon and fall off to feast on blood another day. And the worst part is when they are sucking you dry, they are sharing bodily fluids with you and if they have a disease, so do you!
We will have to bush hog the grass before it is time to pick blackberries, if it becomes impossible to cut it for hay. I do not want to wade through thigh-high grass to pick berries.
We use Frontline for the pets, but there is only surface applied products like OFF! for us people and you have to keep reapplying it. Even with Frontline, our dog got a few ticks and they ended up giving him Lyme's disease and ehrlichia. He was on antibiotics for weeks and I am not entirely sure they did the job. Oh, goody. More vet bills.
So when I read this article in the paper this morning, I got excited. A robot that kills ticks and does not leave poison behind.
I love the whole concept of robots doing the work I don't want to do. Maybe it was a childhood growing up reading, no devouring, Robert Heinlein. He was the best science fiction writer, ever. His book, The Door Into Summer combined cats, robots, romance and time travel. It is way dated because it was written in the '50s, but still enjoyable.
I sent a copy of the article to my son, Travis. He is working on his Mechanical Engineering PhD and has built quite a few robots. Here's hoping I get one for Christmas. Of course, I have also requested a wind turbine to generate electricity. That is at the top of my post doc gift list.
But tick removal is way up there.