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Ticking All the Boxes: the Amazing Variety of Ticks in San Mateo County
At the District, the majority of our tick surveillance focuses on three tick species: Ixodes pacificus, (western black-legged tick), Dermacentor varabilis, (American dog tick) and Dermacentor occidentalis, (Pacific coast tick). These ticks quest for hosts in the vegetation along trails, and are easily picked up by hikers and dogs. While these three species present the greatest risk of disease transmission to humans and pets, there are many more species of ticks that live in San Mateo County that we do not collect as part of our usual surveillance. This may be because these ticks species are not known to transmit disease, or because they are very rarely encountered as they live exclusively in the nests of their host animals. Nonetheless, these ticks can play a role in maintaining diseases by circulating them among reservoirs (animals that are regularly infected with a disease but do not die from it). Learn more about some of the tick species that we occasionally encounter in San Mateo County parks and open spaces.
How Much Do You Know About Rabies?
Rabies has become notorious for its high risk of death and frightening symptoms, but how much do you really know about this rare but deadly virus?

From 2005 to 2014, there were four human cases of rabies in the entire state of California, with the most recent case in 2012. Even in rabies-endemic areas of the United States like the northeast, southeast and midwest, rabies is uncommon.  It is detected in wild animals in less than 1 out of every 100,000 animals tested. However, low risk doesn’t mean no risk, and the deadly nature of rabies infection means it’s still prudent to avoid contact with potentially infected animals. Read more about rabies.

Holiday Office Hours
The District office will be closed December 24th and 25th in observance of Christmas and January 1st in observance of New Years Day. See the District calendar.

West Nile Virus Update
The 2018 West Nile virus season has come to an end. There were no West Nile virus detections in San Mateo County in November. Read more.

Mosquito Population Update
Counts for all mosquito species continue to decline as we progress into the cooler season. All species are near or slightly below average for this time of year. Read more.

Our Work by the Numbers
In November, technicians responded to 136 service requests, including 32 reports of mosquitoes or standing water, 40 yellowjacket and wasp requests, 33 rodent inspections, and 12 insect identifications. The total number of service requests is somewhat below average, mainly because we have had fewer than typical mosquito-related requests. The number of yellowjacket and wasp service requests continued to decline, and will likely remain low until spring. Read more.
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