Of the four common ticks found in Contra Costa County, only the Western black-legged tick (Ixodes pacificus) is capable of transmitting Lyme disease. Adult females are about 1/8 of an inch long and are reddish-brown in color, while males are slightly smaller and are brownish-black in color.
On April 1, 2010, the District discontinued Lyme disease testing on ticks. After careful consideration, the District entomologist and biologists, along with biologists from the California Department of Public Health concluded that individual tick testing does not significantly reduce the risk of Lyme disease for patients since the data cannot confirm human disease. People who are concerned with possible Lyme disease infection should contact their physician.
Information regarding whether to test a tick or not can be obtained by clicking here.
Several commercial laboratories can test ticks for Lyme disease for a fee.
PLEASE NOTE: Due to changing workloads and staffing levels due to COVID-19, the District is temporarily suspending the tick and stinging or biting pest identification service.
Until further notice, do not send tick or pest samples to the District for identification. If you have removed a tick that was attached, you can compare it to the pictures on our website to determine whether it is the western black-legged tick.
The District building also remains closed to the public due to COVID-19, so do not attempt to drop a tick or pest sample off at the District.
Detailed information regarding the species of ticks in Contra Costa County and how you can prevent ticks from getting onto your clothing or skin. READ MORE.
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Most people believe that it's during the summer months of the year when their risk of being bitten by a tick is the greatest, as warm temperatures draw many individuals to take part in outdoor activities. READ MORE.