The Saskatchewan Ministry of Health is reminding residents to be vigilant as tick season begins in the province. While the risk of Lyme disease remains low, ticks can pose a health concern and it's important to take steps to avoid bites. 

The most common type of tick in Saskatchewan is the American dog tick, which is active from mid-April to late July. This species does not transmit Lyme disease. However, black-legged ticks, which can carry Lyme disease, have occasionally been found. 

"As the weather warms up, it's important to be aware of the risk of ticks," said Dr. Julie Kryzanowski, Deputy Chief Medical Health Officer. "Simple steps can help protect you and your family." 

Some of the tips for avoiding tick bites include wearing light-coloured clothing with long sleeves and pants, tucking pant legs into socks, using insect repellents that have DEET, and checking yourself, children and pets for ticks after coming in from outside.  

If you do find a tick, it should be removed promptly with fine-tipped tweezers. As well, a photo of the tick can be submitted to for identification.  

Last year, there were a small number of black-legged ticks, the species that carries Lyme disease, spotted in Saskatchewan. If you experience symptoms of Lyme disease, such as a rash, fever, headache, or muscle aches, it is recommended you see your healthcare provider.