In a recent study on ticks published in the journal PLoS One, it has been determined that ticks will survive better under environmentally-realistic conditions in southern environments due to the warmer climate.
"Researchers hypothesize that host-seeking nymphs in southern populations of Ixodes scapularis
remain below the leaf litter surface, while northern nymphs seek hosts
on leaves and twigs above the litter surface. This behavioral difference
potentially results in decreased tick contact with humans in the south,
and fewer cases of Lyme disease." (Outbreak News, Lyme Disease: Northern Ticks Environment Better For Survival, Transmission)
Listen to the interview on Outbreak News Radio with University of Rhode Island's Professor of Plant Sciences, Dr. Howard Ginsberg.
Lyme Disease, and other tick borne illnesses, can be prevented by installing deer fencing around properties and home gardens. It is also recommended for individuals to perform thorough tick-checks on themselves and their pets after long term outdoor activity. If a tick is found, follow the steps to remove a tick and take the tick to the doctor for identification.