When Are Ticks a Problem for Arizona Homeowners?
Ticks are generally considered a summer pest but, if you live in Arizona, they can get into your home any time of the year. It has less to do with the ticks and more to do with the critters that bring ticks into your home, like mice and rats. Today we're going to look at the link between ticks and rodents. Understanding this link can give you important insight into how ticks come into your yard and into your home.
Why Rodents are the Worst Host for Ticks
When a tick first hatches, it only has six legs. These six-legged larvae are called seed ticks. In this early stage of development, they look for small creatures to get onto. But they don't stay there. When they develop past their larval stage and grow another pair of legs, they drop off and seek a larger animal to get onto. In the wild, this might be a fox or a deer. In your yard, it might be your dog or your cat. Ticks can also get on you and hitch a ride into your home. This makes rodent control in your yard a must if you're looking to control ticks and the dangerous diseases they can transmit to your, your pets, and everyone living in your home.
Mice and rats don't just bring ticks into your yard, they can also bring them into your home. Your home is a paradise for rodents. It gives them protection from predators, protection from the hot sun, and a home base from which to seek food resources inside and outside. As they move about inside your home, seed ticks can fall off on every floor from the basement to the attic.
How to Resist Ticks Around Your Home
If you hope to keep ticks out of your home, you're going to need to prevent rodents from getting into your home. There are a few ways you can make your yard resistant to rodents:
- Keep trash in sealed receptacles.
- Remove clutter from your yard and especially from next to your home. Rodents use many objects as a place to hide and then encroach upon your exterior walls.
- Keep bird feeders away from your home. Mice are fond of the seeds bird drop from feeders as they eat.
- Address any conditions that allow for water collection in your yard. These provide drinking holes for rodents.
- Put up fencing to keep rodents out of strategic locations such as outdoor pet areas.
- Invest in residential pest control that comes with rodent monitoring and trapping.
Another piece to the prevention puzzle is the control of moisture around your home. When ticks fall off their first host, they search for areas that are high in moisture. This is because ticks need a lot of moisture to survive. They love vegetation that is kept wet or moist ground underneath an object stored in your backyard. Do an inspection of your yard and look for areas of moist vegetation or damp ground and consider ways to make these spots drier. Here are some suggestions:
- Put spacing between plants in your landscaping to allow good airflow. This will dry your topsoil faster. If you notice areas that get a lot of shade, find ways to let the sunlight in. This will also help to dry things out faster.
- Inspect your gutters and make sure you don't have anything in there that is clogging up the works. Clogged gutters can spill water over and create dampness near your home.
- Put sprinklers on a timer.
- Stow objects inside if possible.
- Refrain from laying anything in your yard that blocks the sun and creates a moist habitat underneath.
- Invest in tick treatments to directly reduce tick populations in your yard. Routine treatments give your foundation perimeter the protection it needs to keep the ticks that drop off animals from surviving in a location that is in close proximity to your pets and anyone who walks around in your yard.
If you need assistance with residential pest control and tick control in Arizona, find out if you're in our service area. Schendel Pest Services is a leader in pest control. We offer real solutions for dangerous threats like tick-borne diseases. Reach out to us today for service.
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