A Message from the NTCI Parents Mailing List:
I have been asked to send this information to you from Toronto Public Health &
May 21, 2015
Re: Blacklegged Ticks
As recently reported in the media, Toronto Public Health has found blacklegged
ticks on Algonquin Island and Morningside Park. These ticks can be infected
with the bacteria that cause Lyme disease. The ticks have been sent to the
National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg for further identification and
testing for these bacteria. Testing can take up to several weeks.
Late last fall, Toronto Public Health found blacklegged ticks in Rouge Valley.
Finding blacklegged ticks in multiple locations in the City suggests these
ticks are becoming established in Toronto. However, the risk of Lyme disease in
Toronto is low and the vast majority of ticks are not infected.
Blacklegged ticks are found in bushy or wooded areas that have tall grass or
lots of leaves on the ground. We are aware that some schools have planned
end-of-year outdoor field trips. Parents can help their child take appropriate
precautions when enjoying outdoor activities in wooded and bushy areas by
Wear light coloured clothing so ticks can be easily spotted;
Wear long sleeves and long pants; tuck pants into socks;
Use bug repellent containing DEET (please follow manufacturer's
Inspected by an adult or buddy for any attached ticks.
Ticks found on the skin should be promptly removed. Transmission of Lyme
disease requires the tick to be attached for at least 24 hours. Ticks removed
can be submitted to Toronto Public Health for identification and further
For more information, please visit our web site at toronto.ca/health or call
Dr. David McKeown
Medical Officer of Health
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North Toronto Collegiate Institute
17 Broadway Avenue
Toronto, Ontario, M4P 1T7
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