How Ticks Thrive in Your Lawn: Where and Why
Ticks thrive outdoors. They live in tall grassy areas, in wooded areas and in areas where weeds grow unchecked. You can find ticks living in shady areas sheltered by trees, yards bordered by woods, and in ornamental plantings and gardens.
Areas that Are Attractive to Ticks
Ticks are not insects and do not fly or jump. They are in the arachnid family along with spiders and scorpions. They climb up on tall grass and ornamentals or wait on low lying branches to latch on to a potential host passing by. Ticks will live wherever there is shade, humidity and a warm blooded host.
Tick-friendly areas in your yard include:
- Lawns that back up into wooded areas.
- Borders of shady trees, tall grasses and ornamentals, Spanish Moss, low tree branches, shady lawn areas and gardens.
- Lawn areas where there is human activity, such as children’s play-areas, dog runs, paths and gardens.
- Areas attractive to wildlife: bird-feeders that are accessible through vegetation or location; areas that attract mice and other rodents; areas that attract deer.
Why Should I worry about Ticks?
Ticks are the most prevalent arachnid that transmits disease to domestic animals like dogs and second only to mosquitoes in carrying disease to humans. Some of the more serious tick-borne diseases are Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease. If untreated, these diseases cause serious illness or death.
While mosquitoes quickly feed and leave, ticks attach themselves to the host and feed slowly over several days. Despite the fact that they are attached for several days, most people do not realize that they have a tick. Ticks are very small in size. The female adult deer tick is the size of a sesame seed, the male is even smaller. As they eat they gorge themselves with blood and become more visible. But they are still difficult to find.
What Can I Do to Remove Ticks from my Lawn?
Remove tick friendly areas:
- Keep your grass short; remove overgrown vegetation; keep your yard trimmed and weed-free.
- If your property abuts a wooded area, create a dry barrier (gravel or a dry mulch) where your lawn meets the woods. This will make it more difficult for the ticks to move into lawn areas.
- Trim trees and bushes to create more sunny areas.
- Have a professional who knows how to kill ticks spray the house and yard.
Eliminating all ticks is practically impossible. Ticks are very small, reproduce rapidly (a female lays 4,000 eggs at once) and are portable. Ticks can travel on a host to another location, drop off and then pick up another host. While ticks generally prefer being outside, the brown dog tick is capable of surviving indoors for a period of time. While you should check for ticks every night, killing ticks one at a time is not an effective tick control plan.
A professional yard pest control specialist has the training and know how to kill ticks safely and effectively. It is important to use a safe, effective treatment to kill ticks and to apply the pesticide in such a way to avoid flushing ticks up and into your house.
Since ticks can hitchhike onto your property accidentally by a pet, or family member, a pest control plan is an important service provided by a yard pest control specialist. A good pest control company guarantees prompt service, knows how to kill ticks effectively and provides a long-term plan to ensure a tick-free barrier around your home allowing you and your family to enjoy your yard all summer long.
For more ideas on how to ensure a pest-free summer, download our homeowner’s guide by clicking on the image below.