Of all the creepy-crawlies that Texans live among in the big state, ticks are just the worst when it comes to health issues of man and beast, says Pete Teel, Texas AgriLife Research entomologist with headquarters at Texas A&M University in College Station.
"To complicate matters, Texas is home to 11 common species of ticks, all with their own brand of disease-carrying specialties, so it's important to know what you're dealing with and how to manage it," Teel says.
He says the TickApp tells you all you need to know in one central location.
"So whether you are a health-care professional needing fast tick identification information, an urban pet owner slogging through the bewildering arsenal of control alternatives, or a South Texas cattleman facing financial hardship due to ticks, the app is meant for you."
The app is simple to access and use.
Teel says the mobile smart-phone app is available at no charge. It's designed to be easy to use while offering the most information with minimal searching.
"It's all very user friendly," Teel says. "It opens with just six easy-to-follow tabs that are accurate and quick to navigate. There's a brief introduction, then a tick ID tab followed by tabs on tick biology, prevention and protection, removal, and finally control and management practices."
Teel says all the information is professionally vetted, regularly updated, and good for use by anyone—although attribution is requested by those who plan to reproduce the app material.
The new app also is proving to be a very timely tool.
"This year is shaping up to be one of the worst ever for ticks," Teel says. "The record heat and drought last year, followed by rains over much of the populated parts of the state this year, are the perfect recipe for tick encounters by you, your family, your pets or livestock."
The new app can help keep your prepared and informed during this summer season.
"Know what you're dealing with by becoming familiar with the TickApp," Teel suggests. "It may be one of the best decisions you make all summer."