Ticks pose a major health threat as they can carry deadly diseases such as Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease. Let a Mosquito Squad representative know if any of the following apply to your family or property:
– Your yard is adjacent to fields, woods, or tall grasses
– Your yard has a wall fence
– You or a family member are frequent gardeners
– Your children enjoy playing in or near trees, fields, or tall grass
– Your property has a lot of trees, shrubbery or dense groundcover plants
– You have a wood, leaf litter, brush, or compost pile on or near your yard
– You have pets that love spending time outdoors
Named after the town in Connecticut where it was first found, Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease in the United States, and has been diagnosed in all states except Hawaii. In fact, there are nearly 30,000 cases reported by the Centers for Disease Control every year. If caught early on, Lyme disease can be treated fairly easily with variety of antibiotics. However, Lyme disease is not the easy disease to diagnose given that its symptoms can be confused with those of other illnesses. The tell-tale bull’s eye rash is just one of the many symptoms of Lyme, which also include fatigue, fever, and joint pain.
Although it can affect humans, ehrlichiosis is typically found in deer and dogs. The ehrlichiosis bacteria kills white blood cells which can cause headaches, fatigue and muscle aches. Luckily, the bacterial illness can be treated with a series of antibiotics.
– Although commonly referred to as insects, ticks are technically arachnids.
– Ticks are classified as parasites as they feed on the blood of host animals.
– There are hundreds of species of ticks, but only a handful transmit disease to humans.
– The blackegged tick (also known as the deer tick in the eastern US), the Lone Star tick, and the dog tick are of greatest concern in the US.
– Ticks do not jump or fly. They transfer to hosts by waiting on tall grass and crawling on board when a mammal passes by.
– Ticks can be active as long as the ground temperature is above 45 degrees Farenheit.
– Ticks that endanger humans also choose deer as hosts and are, therefore, typically prevalent wherever deer are found.
– Tick bites often go undetected because they do not itch or hurt.
– Ticks that enter your home can live inside for extended periods.
– There are two families of ticks: hard ticks (Ixodidae) and soft ticks (Argasidae).
– Hard ticks have three distinct life stages: larva, nymph and adult.
– Soft ticks can go through a number of nymph stages before reaching their adult phase.
– Tick larvae are not believed to carry pathogens. The pathogens are received from the host when the larvae take their first blood meal. They do not feed again until nymph stage.
– The nymph stage is believed to be most responsible for infecting humans as nymphs are small and can more easily go unnoticed on the skin.
Tick Protection for Your Home and Family
Ticks are both dangerous and annoying. To reduce the number ticks on your property, Mosquito Squad recommends following the 6-C’s of tick control:
Ticks thrive in damp, shaded environments and tend to die in sunny, dry areas. Clear out areas where lawn and tree debris gather and relocate compost piles away from high traffic areas. Separate those areas with wood chips or gravel. And avoid positioning playground equipment, decks, or patios near wooded areas.
Eliminate leaf litter and brush by cleaning it up around the house and lawn edges, mow tall grasses and keep your lawn short. This reduces the number of places that ticks can hide.
Select plants and shrubs that are not attractive to deer and/or install physical barriers to keep deer out of your yard. Check with your local nursery to determine the best choices for your area.
Familiarize yourself with the most likely tick hiding places on your property and check them frequently. Fences, brick walls, and patio retaining walls are all common hiding places.
Family pets are prime targets for ticks and can carry infected ticks into your home. Talk to your veterinarian about using tick collars or sprays. As with all pest control products, be sure to only use as directed and to always use caution.
Through regular application, Mosquito Squad Northcentral Wisconsin utilizes barrier sprays that eliminate adult ticks on contact and remain effective for 14-21 days. Each spray takes approximately 20-minutes to apply, and only another 30-minutes for the spray to cure before you can get back to enjoying your yard.