Sometimes I wish experts would just keep their opinions to themselves. And, of course, I'm just kidding. We need these experts, for example, to make us squeamish with the realization that our mild winter will likely mean a greater abundance of ticks.

As eight-legged creatures go, I'm respectful of spiders and I don't have to WORRY about scorpions, but ticks? Can't stand 'em.

And I'm sure I'm not alone.

Yes, we had a very mild winter, to the relief and enjoyment of many.

But those mild winters have their downsides.

Insider Louisville spoke with a University of Kentucky extension entomologist who revealed that these unwelcome pests not only survived the winter weather but have arrived much earlier than normal in 2017.

A warmer than normal spring didn't help matters much, either.

But you can take steps to avoid putting yourself at risk from the American dog tick and the lone star tick, which are Kentucky's two most common types of ticks.

(Wait a minute, shouldn't a LONE STAR tick be in Texas?)

Wooded and grassy areas with tall vegetation are popular spots for ticks, so if you know you're going to be in places like that, wear proper clothing--long sleeve shirt, jeans, hats.

By the way, the lone star tick has a white spot on its back if it's a female and is completely reddish-brown if it's male.

The dog tick has a reddish brown body with white markings on its back.

What's more, the Centers for Disease Control says that Kentucky has one of the highest rates of ehrlichiosis, which is a bacterial disease the lone star ticks can carry.

And, of course, there's Lyme disease.

You can't mess around when it comes to ticks.

Take precautions.  For helpful information and advice from the National Alliance for Safe Pest Control, CLICK HERE!