Tick and Mosquito Control Facts

At Mosquito Authority, we know it is important to have all of the facts when it comes to tick and mosquito control. Educating yourself on these pests is a big step towards having a mosquito and tick-free home, and we want you to be as informed as possible. There is a lot to know when it comes to mosquitoes and ticks, so we put together some fun facts you might not have heard before:

Scratching a mosquito bite agitates the area

Although you might feel relief for a few seconds, scratching a mosquito bite does not actually help. In fact, it makes it worse by agitating the area and increasing the itchiness you feel. Some remedies including aloe vera, honey, and chamomile tea can help reduce the itch of a mosquito bite.

Animals can contract more than one disease from ticks

The need for tick control stems from their potential to spread diseases to both humans and animals. According to Country Friends Veterinary Clinic, animals can actually contract more than one disease from a single tick bite. Also, dogs are more likely to experience a tick bite because cats frequently clean themselves.

Female mosquitoes lay their eggs in shallow water

Have you ever wondered why mosquito control specialists recommend getting rid of any standing water in your yard? Well, it’s because female mosquitoes lay their eggs in areas of shallow water and sometimes even damp soil. 

You should avoid removing ticks with your bare hands

While you might be tempted to remove a tick from yourself or a pet with your hands, use tweezers instead. Using tweezers will allow you to grab the tick as close to your skin as possible to make sure you don’t leave any part of the tick in your skin. It is also important to remove ticks as quickly as possible!

We didn’t always know that mosquitoes spread West Nile Virus

According to Smithsonian Magazine, birds were once believed to be the cause of spreading West Nile Virus in the United States. It was not until 2010 that a study revealed mosquitoes to be the true cause of West Nile Virus cases from 2001 to 2004. As mosquito control specialists, we want to ensure that you and your family are protected from these pests and the diseases they carry.

Most ticks go through four life stages

The life stages of most ticks are egg, six-legged larva, eight-legged nymph, and adult. Ticks need a blood meal at each stage of life, meaning they need to find and feed on at least one host per life stage. 

There are several effective mosquito repellents

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are four effective chemical repellents: DEET, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, IR3535, and Picaridin. 

There are more species of tick than you think 

While there are only 90 tick species found in the United States, there are over 850 species of ticks throughout the world. Tick species found in the U.S. include the American Dog Tick (Dermacentor variabilis), the Eastern Blacklegged Tick (Ixodes scapularis), and the Lone Star Tick (Amblyomma americanum). 

For more information on tick and mosquito control, check out our other blogs!

Life Cycle of a Tick

At Mosquito Authority, we don’t just protect you and your family from mosquitoes; we offer tick extermination as well! Ticks are notorious for causing all sorts of diseases, from Lyme Disease to Rocky Mountain spotted fever to anaplasmosis. In order to survive, these pests latch onto animals and/or humans to get their meals. If you want to read some interesting facts about these pests, check out our blog highlighting some things you probably didn’t know about ticks.

Nobody really wants to think about ticks, but these creatures actually have a fascinating life cycle. Most ticks go through four life stages: egg, six-legged larva, eight-legged nymph, and adult. After hatching, a tick must eat a blood meal at every life stage in order to move onto the next one. The CDC estimates that preparing to feed can take anywhere from 10 minutes to two hours, depending on the species of the tick and its stage of life.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Ticks that require this many hosts can take up to three years to complete their full life cycle, and most will die because they don’t find a host for their next feeding.” 

While the tick life cycle is very similar for all ticks, it does vary for some species. For example, the Rhipicephalus sanguineus, otherwise known as the brown dog tick, prefers to feed on the same host during all of its life stages. Most other species, however, need different hosts at each life stage. Ticks have the ability to feed on mammals, reptiles, birds, and amphibians, increasing the chance that they will come into contact with disease at some point in their lives.

When a tick feeds on someone or something with a bloodborne infection, it ingests the pathogens in that host’s blood. So, when that tick finds a new host during its next life stage, it can transfer whatever disease it has ingested to its new food source.

So, how do ticks find their hosts? According to the CDC, these pests can detect an animal’s (that includes humans) breath and body odors, as well as sense body heat, vibrations, and moisture. Ticks can also identify paths with a lot of traffic and search for hosts there. However, because ticks can’t jump or fly, they sit on leaves and/or tall grass and wait for a host to walk by.

This is why maintaining your yard is an important part of tick extermination. Because many ticks search for hosts in areas of tall grass and bushes, clearing this foliage from the edge of your lawn can help reduce the blacklegged tick population. You should also remove any leaf litter from your lawn and keep playground equipment away from trees.

We also highly recommend hiring a professional tick extermination service. Ticks can carry a wide variety of diseases, and exterminating them will give you more peace of mind when enjoying your outdoor space. Just like with our mosquito control service, Mosquito Authority offers you tick extermination with no contracts and no commitments. Call us today to schedule a tick treatment!