Controlling pest populations isn’t just about keeping gross critters off your property, it can also be about controlling the spread of dangerous diseases. Ticks pose this kind of danger since they are well-known transmitters of Lyme disease, a potentially life-threatening illness. Knowing how you can prevent tick bites and populations from being an issue on your property can help keep everyone a little safer.
The Dangers Of A Deer Tick
Deer ticks, one of the most common local varieties of a tick, are some of the worst transmitters of Lyme disease in the world. Contrary to what some believe, ticks don’t cause Lyme disease, but rather they help spread it around. The term is “vector,” which refers to anything that is known to increase the spread of disease. As bloodsucking parasites, ticks can spread diseases from one animal to the next very easily, directly into the bloodstream.
While not every tick bite results in the transmission of Lyme disease, knowing how to spot ticks may just save you from having to worry at all:
- Size: Ticks are incredibly small animals, though they can be seen by the naked eye if you look hard enough. They are typically smaller than an apple seed.
- Shape & Color: Ticks are oval-shaped arachnids, eight-legged bugs that are a cousin of spiders. Deer tick males are smaller than females, often uniformly brown with a lighter spot on their backs. Females are brown and red, with a gorging sac on their rears.
- Bites: Tick bites are small punctures on the skin that are usually found in clusters or lines. While not every suspected tick bite warrants a trip to the doctor, it’s best to play it safe and you should seek medical attention if you notice any symptoms worse than local swelling and itching.
Where To Avoid Ticks
Ticks are too small and sluggish to transport themselves very far, so they let their hosts do the walking for them. Some people confuse ticks with fleas and think that these pests can jump onto people or pets, but they can’t. Instead, ticks wait on tall grasses or vegetation for something with a heartbeat to brush past. They then latch onto clothing, hair, or skin and hitchhike wherever they can find a new home. That’s why it’s important to take precautions, like treating your skin and clothing with approved products, before going outdoors. Hikes, picnics, and walks with the dog are all common ways that people encounter tick populations.
Tick Prevention For Your Property
One or two small ticks can quickly breed into an entire infestation if you track them back to your property. Take the following steps to prevent an outbreak:
- Cover up: When traveling around outdoors, cover as much of your skin as possible and avoid wearing shorts and t-shirts that leave you exposed. Using proven bug sprays and topical ointments can also help ward off ticks.
- Combing: Whenever you and your loved ones return from outdoors, especially in warm-weather months that ticks thrive in, be sure to inspect clothing and hair thoroughly for any clinging pests. Use a fine-toothed comb to get deep into pet fur.
- Inspections: While you can take steps to prevent ticks from biting you, the only real way to know for sure that your property isn’t infested is to have pest professionals take a look. Routine inspections can clue you into pest populations before they get out of hand.
The Pros Can Handle It
Since the dangers of ticks can be so great, the safest way to avoid them is to partner with local pest experts. At Romney Pest Control, our friendly staff can assist you with more helpful tips to stay protected, and our inspections can help determine your property’s risk of a pest infestation.
Don’t risk Lyme disease and the other woes of tick populations, contact Romney Pest Control today.