When we think of the threat of ticks, we usually think of the summer months. Well local researchers say that because of the mild beginning to this month, this is the height of the tick season.

The Cornell Cooperative Extension in Albany County have been conducting sweeps to locate the amount of ticks in our area. They found that there are more adult ticks and with the warmer weather leading into the winter, there is an increased population of ticks possibly carrying illness.

When the weather is cooler and wetter, adult ticks search for a host, hoping to find a warm animal or human. Many of these ticks can be carrying dangerous tick-borne illnesses.

I know none of us want a cold winter, but the Department of Health says that this would be the best for the tick population to decline. Not necessarily snow, though. If we get a lot of snow, it will act as an insulator between them and the elements allowing them to survive longer. We need to hope for a very cold winter with not a lot of snow so that the ticks will die.

There is good news, ticks tend to be bigger this time of year so they are easier to spot. Be diligent and keep checking kids, pets and yourselves for ticks through December.