Despite an early April Fool’s joke on Monday, the snow, for the most part, is gone. It’s finally starting to feel like spring and with the return of warmer weather, comes the return of ticks, according to the Trumbull Monroe Health District. The Health District is encouraging parents to be on the alert for ticks — peak season is from April to September.

The incidence of Lyme disease is higher in children under the age of 10 than in any other age group. Most cases of Lyme disease are associated with the nymphal stage of the deer tick. Nymphs are small (about the size of a pinhead), difficult to spot, and are active during the late spring and summer months when you and your family spend more time outdoors, according to the health district

This shouldn’t stop kids from being kids and enjoying all the outdoors has to offer. By using recommended personal protection techniques consistently, parents and adults can assure that you and your children can enjoy the wonders of nature without fear of Lyme disease or other tick-borne illnesses.

TMHD encourages residents to protect themselves this tick season by taking simple action steps:

• Know where ticks live and avoid these habitats.

• Conduct daily tick checks on family and pets.

• Remove ticks promptly with tweezers. Do not use rubbing alcohol or soap and water to remove the tick.

• Dress appropriately when entering areas where ticks live. Wear long pants, light in color, tucked into socks; wear long shirt, tucked into pants; cover hair with hat. Remove and check clothing for ticks after leaving any suspected tick habitat.

• Use insect and tick repellent to further reduce tick exposure. There are many varieties including botanical, herbal or natural-based repellents. Choose what will work best for you and your family. For more information on repellents visit the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station at ct.gov/caes and click on the sidebar’s “Tick Management Handbook.”

Don’t forget about your furry friends. Use veterinarian recommended control products on pets. Be sure to follow manufacturers’ recommendations.

Engorged ticks can be brought to the TMHD in a plastic bag for testing. Ticks are sent to the Connecticut Agricultural Experiment Station and the cost is $3.

The mission of the Trumbull Monroe Health District is to protect the health of residents, and to prevent disease. For more information on the Trumbull Monroe Health District call 203-452-5195, Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.