Ticks & Mites
Ticks are small insects, with adults ranging between 1/8” to 5/8” long and nymphs even smaller. Mites are microscopic in size.
Ticks survive entirely on a diet of blood, seeking hosts in animals, birds, and humans. Ticks can transmit multiple diseases such as Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, feeding on an infected host and then transmitting the diseases to the next host.
Mites feed on plants, animals, humans, and even other insects. Clover mites are plant eaters and will lay eggs in your home and attack houseplants or migrate outside to feed. Bird mites infest bird nests and will bite humans but will leave a human host if another bird is found. The dust mite may be the most common and known to stimulate allergies and hay fever. Mange and scabies are also caused by mites.
Entry: Ticks will crawl on bushes or other plants and wait for a host to brush past the plant. They will locate a quiet place to feed, burrowing their mouthparts into the skin. Once engorged, they will drop off.
Mites will burrow under the skin of a host or enter the respiratory system while the host is sleeping.
Do-it-yourself Effectiveness: Inspect clothing and skin after outdoor exposure and inspect pets and their bedding frequently. Wash bedding in warm water and keep your home clean and clear of dust collecting items. If allergies are persistent it may be necessary to remove carpets and drapery to reduce dust.
The Lone Star Tick is brown thrives in wooded areas, especially near water, where it can be aggressive in finding hosts such as deer and other mammals. The female has a white star on her back.