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John Elyard of Kuwait said he and his brother want to hike an AT segment
and that his brother is concerned about Lyme disease.
Walt Daniels is correct that there is no vaccine for Lyme disease
currently available. I'm sure Walt will let us know how his
guinea-pigging turns out.
I did a survey for the deer tick (Lyme disease tick) on the AT in 1991
for my M.S. thesis research. My study area was the AT from the WV/MD
border to the MA/VT border. The survey included repeated sampling of the
AT in certain states, such as 5 walks through NY, 3 walks through CT
and NJ, twice through MA, once each through PA and MD. Sampling for ticks
was conducted at least every 3 miles on 100-200 foot sections of trail
and trail edges. I wrote an article about the ecology of the deer tick
and personal precautions for AT users/maintainers in the April, 1993
issue of _The Registrar_, an ATC publication. A more in-depth
synopsis of my research was published in the Proceedings of the 1993
Northeastern Recreation Research Symposium. If any one would like a
copy of either of these articles, I'd be happy to snail-mail it to you.
Also, I work for the New York State Dept. of Health, Arthropod-borne
Disease Program and stay current with information pertaining to the
Linda Wacker mentioned wearing a hat...probably regarding deer flies and
black flies. This is good advice. A recent report suggests that
affixing a fly strip to the hat will help capture the offending insects.
Folks who have tested this say it works. It would probably be better if
hikers without trail names avoid this method for fear of being labeled
with embarrassing trail names (such as "Carrier of Fly Carcasses").