Say Hello to Good-Bye Bugs
Story by Clifford Hart
Photo: Courtesy of John Kidd
It’s no secret that the beautiful landscape of the Hudson Valley is also replete with hidden dangers. A walk across a farm field, a visit to the vegetable garden, a hike in the woods—none of these are possible anymore without the tacit acknowledgement that a threat is lurking, hidden but not invisible—except often after it’s too late.
The dreaded deer tick, Ixodus scapularis, and numerous others have infected the Hudson Valley and most of the eastern United States with its insidious bacterium Lyme borreliosis, known more commonly as Lyme disease, and in their wake have spread fear far and wide.
Like many newcomers to the region, John Kidd, his wife and young son were excited with the prospect of putting down roots here, renovating an historic paper mill astride Wappinger’s Creek in Stanfordville and creating lovely gardens and walking trails in the woods alongside the river. Coming north from New York City, John and his wife Jin likely had some knowledge of ticks but probably minimal close contact with the insects inside the urban landscape.