If there is one type of pest that inspires dread when they invade your Longview lawn, it’s the tick. Ticks are small arachnids that feed on blood to stay alive. While this by itself isn’t a terrible problem considering that mosquitoes and bedbugs do the same thing, it’s the after-effects that cause concern for the people unlucky enough to get bit by a tick.
These effects vary depending on the tick species, which is why it’s important to understand the types you may run across in the Longview area. The most common local species are:
- Lone Star Ticks: This tick resides throughout the south and the eastern United States. The female is 3-4 mm in length and possesses a brown body. The male is smaller and has white lines along the circumference of its body. The female is particularly aggressive in its search for nutrients so they can lay their eggs. This species transmits STARI, which causes an allergic reaction to red meat.
- Black-legged Ticks: Averaging 3-5 mm in length with black legs, this tick is black with the females having an orange crescent along their back. They are most active during the spring and summer months like other ticks but are also active in winter when temperatures are mild. Lyme disease is the most prominent disease they transmit, which requires treatment in its early stages to avoid lifelong health complications.
- Brown Dog Ticks: Without excess blood in its system, this tick is only 3 mm in length. Their bodies are dark brown with brown legs and they primarily feed on canines as their name implies. Despite targeting dogs, this species is likely to become a household pest because it can perform its lifecycle indoors. Diseases such as ehrlichiosis, babesiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever are a risk with this species.
- American Dog Ticks: Brown with yellow and gray markings on their backs, these ticks grow up to 5 mm in size when unfed. While they target animals, they are also drawn to humans especially in the spring and summer months. This tick carries Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.
How Do They Invade
It’s important to understand that ticks never make it inside on their own. Instead, their feeding habits make it such that they attach themselves to a host such as your pet or even yourself to get inside. Practicing tick control in your yard is the best way to reduce the chances of ticks getting inside.
The reason for this is simple. Ticks naturally find themselves drawn into areas such as the woods, forests, and untreated yards. A large part of the reason is due to them attaching themselves to field mice, dogs, and other wild animals that roam these areas.
As we briefly covered before, this pest is parasitic in nature and will carry serious diseases depending on the species in question. Some of the most common illnesses transmitted include Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Tularemia, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, Anaplasmosis, Tick-borne relapsing fever, and STARI.
Ticks will travel across the body quickly, and they prefer the warm and moist areas of your body. As such, the most common sites to discover a tick include the armpits, groin, or scalp. The only good thing about their bite is that it’s painless.
Prevention Is Crucial
Thanks to their small size and rapid reproduction, it’s virtually impossible to control an existing population of ticks effectively. As such, it’s much better to pursue preventative measures. The key to success is to ensure your property isn’t suitable for ticks. For the best results be sure to adhere to the following tips:
- Mow the lawn: Ticks can’t thrive in areas with short vegetation. This means mowing the grass and maintaining the shrubbery is the first step towards a tick-free property.
- Treat the yard: Some people live close enough to the woods or other uncontrolled areas to suffer from territory overlap. A handy thing to do is to treat your yard with pesticides. This should only require one or two applications.
- Guard against vermin: Besides your pet, ticks will often attach themselves to mice, rats, and other rodents. Since rodents like to invade your home too, it stands to reason that guarding against these pests will ensure you’re better protected against ticks.
- Pet control: If you have pets, you must check them regularly for ticks and also apply tick prevention. If you find a tick on your pet, remove it and seek out a veterinarian to ensure treatment isn’t needed for your pet. Some medications can help keep ticks from attaching to your pet.
No More Ticks With Innovative Pest Control
Ticks can hitch a ride on anything that produces blood or provides a surface they can grip. As such, even your very belongings aren’t safe without the proper protections. That’s why we proudly provide effective tick control solutions designed to ensure you and your loved ones stay protected all year long.
Do you fear you have a tick problem? Then give us a call to speak with one of our agents about our professional pest prevention services or fill out our online form to schedule your free quote.