This study will include 230 residential properties in western Connecticut and southern Rhode Island. These two regions were chosen for the study because many people in these areas live in homes with yards that border tick habitat, and many cases of Lyme and other tickborne diseases have been reported from these areas.
In each state, participants will be randomly assigned to one of three study groups and will not know to which group they have been assigned:
Group 1) single properties receiving the ITM treatment of a single pesticide spray and placement of rodent-targeted bait boxes,
Group 2) a cluster of contiguously-treated adjacent properties receiving a single pesticide spray and placement of rodent-targeted bait-boxes, or
Group 3) properties receiving a placebo treatment of water spray and inactive bait boxes.
Studies have shown that targeted residential tick sprays and rodent bait boxes have been effective for reducing tick populations, but they have never been tested using the design of this study. We would like to know if this combination of tactics in single or grouped properties is effective to reduce tick populations and tickborne disease.
Our goal is to find effective management practices that can be recommended to homeowners and that can reduce Lyme and other tickborne diseases in the northeastern United States.