A WARNING has been issued to people visiting Barnsley beauty spots after a dramatic rise in the amount of ticks being spotted.

Farmers, gamekeepers and walkers have reported finding ticks ‘in droves’ on moorland around Dunford Bridge in recent weeks.

Ticks are small blood-sucking arachnids which live in areas of grassland, forests and in parks and gardens.

Lyme disease is the most common of the diseases carried by ticks, with about 3,000 to 4,000 cases each year, according to the UK Health Security Agency.

Tick numbers are increasing due to restrictions on sheep flocks, and limitations on cutting and burning vegetation, healthcare bosses say.

Moorland Association member Simon Gurney said: “The number of ticks has increased dramatically in recent years and some areas are teeming with them.

“The risk of disease is a real concern.

“The recent trend for ‘rewilding’ or leaving vegetation to grow unchecked seems far too risky for human health, as the number of ticks is rising exponentially.”