Here at Mosquito Joe, if we had to pick the one thing that gets us most excited, we would probably loudly exclaim “Warm weather!” We love the outdoors, we love flowers blooming, and while we don’t love mosquitoes, we do love the time of year when we get to start helping our customers again. This year, with the unseasonably warm winter season, our customers are going to need us more than ever. Warmer temperatures are fostering early breeding for outdoor pests and that equals a big problem for your backyard: more mosquitoes, fleas and ticks! Mosquito Joe is known for its conquest to eliminate mosquitoes, but awareness about our ability to help rid your yard of fleas and ticks is much lower, and since these critters can be just as harmful as mosquitoes, educating you about them is a high priority for us. This week, we have ticks in our sights!
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ticks can carry the pathogens for ten human diseases…ten! Ticks can spread illnesses such as Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and Anaplasmosis, which can cause fever, headache, chills, and muscle aches. Ticks are among the most efficient carriers of disease because they attach firmly when sucking blood, feed slowly and may go unnoticed for a considerable amount of time while feeding. Did you know ticks can’t jump or fly? They can only crawl. Ticks wait for host animals from the tips of grasses and shrubs. When brushed by a moving animal or person, they quickly let go of the vegetation and climb onto the host. Like most people, you are probably saying “Gross!” at the thought, but click here to read an article about Tom Mather, a researcher at the University of Rhode Island who catches ticks (yuck!) to help us understand Lyme disease and how ticks work. We are thankful for guys like Tom out there who do those jobs that would send most of us running…and scratching.
As you probably know, our four legged friends can be affected too. Five of the ten diseases ticks transmit to humans can be transmitted to pets. That is why keeping everyone (furry or not) around your household tick-free is important. And if you do find yourself or a pet with a tick, follow these instructions from the CDC:
1. Use fine-tipped tweezers to grasp the tick as close to the skin’s surface as possible.
2. Pull upward with steady, even pressure. Don’t twist or jerk the tick; this can cause the mouth-parts to break off and remain in the skin. If this happens, remove the mouth-parts with tweezers. If you are unable to remove the mouth easily with clean tweezers, leave it alone and let the skin heal.
3. After removing the tick, thoroughly clean the bite area and your hands with rubbing alcohol, an iodine scrub, or soap and water.
To avoid all of this, use prevention methods to keep ticks out of your yard in the first place. Let Mosquito Joe spray your yard and set up a barrier for these intruders. Since our barrier sprays target shrubbery, we already zone in on where ticks live and wait for a host. Don’t let that host be you! Call us today for a free quote. And stay tuned for our next spotlight, fleas!