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Middlesex-London Health Unit

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How to Submit a Tick for Identification

Members of the public are encouraged to submit their tick for identification using the online resource. In person submissions will be accepted if necessary, but please know this is for identification/surveillance purposes only.

Please note: Because a large portion of Middlesex-London is considered by Public Health Ontario to be a Lyme disease risk area, ticks submitted to the Health Unit are NO longer being tested for Lyme disease. If you have concerns about your tick bite please consult a healthcare provider.

Anyone bitten by a blacklegged tick should contact their healthcare provider to determine next steps. Please use this resource when talking with your healthcare provider:

Online Submissions

Free online tick identification services are available at etick.ca
Through etick.ca you can submit a picture of a tick that was removed from both animals and humans for free identification. Send in photographs of your tick and an expert will identify it within 48 hours. They will then contact you via email with the results and will provide the necessary public health-related information. At this time there will be no follow up from the Middlesex-London Health Unit. All ticks results are posted on an interactive public tick map.

In Person Submissions 

If you've tried e-tick.ca or were unable to access it, the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) accepts tick submissions year round. If you have found a tick, please bring it to reception at either of the following locations:

London: 355 Wellington St (inside Citi Plaza)

  • Monday - Friday: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Strathroy: 51 Front St E (inside Kenwick Mall)

*Please note that the following times are subject to unexpected change*

  • Monday - Thursday: 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. (closed between 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.)
  • Friday: Closed 

If a tick is found on a weekend or statutory holiday it can be submitted the following business day. Health Unit staff will contact you with the results of your tick identification. See below for information on how to properly remove a tick from a person’s body and how to get a tick ready to submit to the Health Unit.

 

How do I properly remove a tick from a person’s body?

If you find a tick on person’s body, it is important to remove the tick as soon as possible. Removing ticks within 24 hours usually prevents infection.1

For safe removal of a tick the Middlesex-London Health Unit suggests you follow these instructions:

  • Try to wear gloves when handling an engorged (blood fed) tick.
  • Use tweezers and grab the tick as close to the head as possible. Do not use your fingers.
  • Pull the tick upward and away from the body with steady pressure. Be sure to pull the tick straight out.
  • Once the tick has been removed, clean the area with soap and water. Seek medical attention if you are concerned about a possible skin infection.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly.

How do I get a tick sample ready to submit to the Health Unit? 

Once a tick has been removed from a person’s body, follow these instructions so it can be submitted to the Health Unit for identification: 

  • Put the tick in a sealed container with a tight fitting lid. 
  • Label the container with the name of the person bitten, a phone number and an address, including a postal code.
  • Fill in a Tick Submission Form (PDF 157KB). The form will also be available at the Health Unit's reception (355 Wellington St, London, ON - Citi Plaza & 51 Front St E, Strathroy, ON - Kenwick Mall).
  • On the form, write out any recent travel information, including the location where the tick may have been acquired (picked up).

Additional Information

For more information about how to submit a tick, please contact the Vector-Borne Disease team at:

  • 519-663-5317
 
Date of creation: September 1, 2012
Last modified on: September 22, 2021

How to properly remove a tick

A picture of how to properly remove a tick, by pulling straight up from the skin using tweezers and steady pressure.

Grab the tick as close to the head as possible and pull straight up from the skin using tweezers and steady pressure.

 

 

Blacklegged Tick

A picture of a blacklegged tick, the tick species that can transmit Lyme disease.
Can transmit Lyme disease in Ontario.

 

Dog Tick

A picture of a dog tick, a tick species that cannot transmit Lyme disease.
Cannot transmit Lyme disease in Ontario.