A member reports picking up two ticks on her Edinburgh allotment recently. We do not want to put anyone off the pleasures of allotment gardening, and your web master has regularly picked up ticks while bilberrying along Loch Lomondside with no ill effects. However we feel this is a good opportunity to remind everyone about the risks, and symptoms, of Lymes Disease which can be transmitted through tick bites.
Basically if you pick up a tick you should remove it as soon as possible, and be sure to remove all the mouth parts. Tweezers work quite well, and vets and some pharmacists sell plastic gadgets for removing ticks properly. If you then suffer from a rash or from fever you should hot foot it along to your GP and ask for advice. Lymes disease can be very nasty if it is not treated quickly. The following web sites give excellent advice and information:
On a similar note remember that rats can also cause nasty diseases. Allergy to rats urine is unpleasant, as is Weil’s disease. If rats set up home in your allotment call your local environmental health department as soon as possible.