Exotic and dangerous tick found in 2 New Jersey counties

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Exotic and dangerous tick found in 2 New Jersey counties Exotic and dangerous tick found in 2 New Jersey counties
WATCHUNG -

State officials say that an exotic and potentially dangerous species of tick has been found in two counties.

The tick has never before been seen in the United States but has since been found on a farm in Hunterdon County and at the Watchung Reservation in Union County.

Health officials say that the long-horned or bush tick can carry a potentially deadly virus named SFTS. The insects are tiny and resemble a small spider. Experts say that the tick can easily go unnoticed on animals and people.

The tick at the Watchung Reservation was found last May, but state officials just confirmed it to be a longhorned tick this week.

Health experts say that New Jersey residents should check themselves after any outdoor activity in order to protect against all species of ticks.

County and state agencies will now work with experts at Rutgers University to figure out how widespread it the tick is in New Jersey, as well as how it got to the state. Officials say that they will also work out a way to eliminate the insect from the state.

Longhorned ticks have been found in other countries, including New Zealand. More information about the longhorned tick can be found at the state website.

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