Ticks are not an insect, they are a ectoparasite (external parasite). They have 8 legs while insects only have 6. They spend most of their lives on a blade of grass, on a side of a building, bushes or fence posts looking for a host. Ticks can live up to 200 days without a blood meal.
A female Tick that is fully blood fed, will lay as many as 7,000 eggs, but 4,000 is average. After feeding on a host for a week, she will drop of the host and hide for about 2 weeks in cracks and crevices, garages and dog runs are a couple of examples. After her incubation period she will lay eggs for up to 18 days, coating them with a special secretion to protect them. Afterwards the female dies, and the eggs hatch within 2 to 5 weeks. Once hatched the larvae feed for 3 to 7 days, afterwards they drop and molt into nymphs. They feed again for up to 10 days before molting into adults.
If you ever find a Tick on you or family member DO NOT PULL IT OFF WITH YOUR HANDS. You need to grab it with angled tweezers at the head. Please do not do this method if you do not know how to. Because if you leave the head on the skin you will still have problems. Using rubbing alcohol or touching the Tick head with a warm butter knife should release the Tick. Once the Tick has released itself from the skin, grab the Tick with tweezers and drown it in rubbing alcohol or flush it down the toilet. NEVER SQUISH OR CRUSH THE TICK.
Most people do not realize they have a problem until the ticks are crawling up the walls, curtains or hiding up in the corner of the walls. Your furry family member will need be treated and will also need a preventative. If you are unsure what to use please feel free to ask us or your vet.
If you and family are suffering from a Tick problem call us now. 239-272-6736.