Have you heard that ticks can fall from trees onto unsuspecting people and pets? This is a common misconception – ticks do not live in trees. However, here is some information about where ticks do live, and how you can reduce their presence on your property.
- Ticks are present in all parts of the United States.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “Of the many different tick species found throughout the world, only a select few bite and transmit disease to people. Of the ticks that bite people, different species of ticks transmit different diseases.” Click here for the CDC’s U.S. maps of geographic distribution of ticks that bite humans.
- Ticks do not fly or jump.
When a tick is found near a person’s head or neck, it crawled up the body to get there. Ticks transfer to people and animals when they brush against the places where ticks hide. These pests are commonly found in areas with tall grass or thick underbrush. This is why it’s so important to keep the grass on your property clipped, weed the garden and clear brush piles from your property. These actions will reduce the places where ticks can hide. When you can’t do these things, create clothing barriers such as tucking pant legs into socks and tucking in shirts so that ticks can’t gain access to your skin.
- Ticks need humidity to survive, and as long as the temperature doesn’t dip below freezing for an extended period of time, ticks manage to stay alive.
According to Michael W. Dryden, DVM, PhD, professor in veterinary parasitology at Kansas State University, even when temps drop below freezing, ticks are still out there. "They may not be as efficient at attaching themselves to a host, but they’re still alive." After spending time outdoors in the areas where ticks tend to live, even in winter, it is always a good idea to do a tick check – just in case!
A professional tree care service can help you trim back your trees, shrubs and other woody plants, and work with you to determine the best way to treat your property for pests. Do a zip code search to find qualified tree care in your area.