Ticks are one of the most dangerous pests in the world. They feed on humans and our pets, they transmit a variety of diseases, and they can latch onto us without us ever knowing. Because of this, you should do everything in your power to limit the tick populations around your property. You and your family’s health could depend on it.
What To Know About Common Area Ticks
There are roughly ninety species of ticks found in The United States. However, here in western Pennsylvania, there are only two tick species that you are likely to encounter. These are the Black Legged Tick (Deer Tick) and the Brown Dog Tick (American Dog Tick).
Black Legged Ticks, as their name might suggest, have legs that are darker than the rest of their bodies. Their bodies will change color depending on if they have had a blood meal or not. Before feeding they are an orangish-brown color. While, after feeding, they are a reddish rust color. Moreover, they have flat oval-shaped bodies that are engorged after feeding on blood meal. They are called Deer Ticks because deer are a common host upon which they feed, however they will feed on all sizes of animals, livestock, pets, and even humans.
Brown Dog Ticks have flat oval bodies that are engorged after feeding on blood meal. They are a brown color and feature whitish-gray markings. They grow anywhere from 3/16th of an inch to 5/8th of an inch depending on if they have fed or not. They are called Dog Ticks because they will often feed on pets but, like Black Legged Ticks, will feed on all sizes of animals including humans.
The Dangers Ticks Present
As ticks are wont to feed on the blood of both humans and our pets, they are considered to be quite dangerous pests. This is because they are capable of transmitting a wide array of diseases to us as they feed. These diseases include Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and tularemia.
In addition to the diseases they might bring, tick bites can also be the cause of other ailments. Though tick bites are generally unpainful (which means we may be bitten and not even know it) they can cause itchiness, fever, and even tick paralysis in some extreme cases.
Though not every tick bite will transmit a disease, given all the potential diseases and issues that can derive from them, it's important to do whatever you can to make your property less desirable to ticks, thus limiting your exposure.
How To Lower Tick Populations On Your Property
When it comes to tick prevention around the property, the two most important objectives are to reduce the areas where ticks might hide and remove anything that may attract wildlife to your property as wildlife, in turn, attracts ticks, too.
To reduce the tick populations around your property you should:
Remove any bird feeders or animal feeders.
Keep your lawn well-maintained.
Trim all vegetation around your property and cut back wooded areas.
Remove all organic debris from your property including grass and leaf piles.
Talk to your veterinarian about tick prevention for your pets.
While these are great ways to reduce your tick exposure while at home, there are some other steps you can take while out in the wild to reduce your exposure there, too. These include:
Wear long sleeves and pants tucked into your socks to cover exposed skin.
Stick to the center of hiking trails and avoid venturing into the brush and high grass.
Check you and your pet's bodies for ticks after returning from the wilderness.
The Best Method For Tick Prevention
While you can and should take the necessary precautions to lower the tick population around your property, the best method for tick prevention is partnering with the experienced pest professionals here at Witt Pest Management.
At Witt Pest Management, we have the experience and the expertise required to make your property safe from ticks. Don’t let ticks take over your yard. Give us a call today!