Flea & Tick Identification

What are fleas & ticks?

Fleas and ticks are most active during the warm, humid summer months, making Florida a place where these pests are active throughout most of the year. Fleas and ticks are two of the world's most common ectoparasites and are a constant source of frustration for both people and animals. Though they both solely feed on blood, there are many differences between the two species.

a tick on a leaf

Fleas are tiny wingless insects with large back legs they use to jump out of the way of danger or onto a passing host. Fleas have a distinct reddish-brown body that is flattened from side to side. Their shape and the hard covering on their bodies protect these pests from being squished easily. Fleas prefer animal hosts over human hosts, and adults typically spend their life on one host feeding and breeding. Flea eggs will fall off the host's body and onto the ground, where they will develop into new adult fleas. 

Ticks are arachnids, not insects. Adults have eight legs, are wingless, and lack antennae. They cannot fly or jump. Ticks feed on many hosts throughout their lives. They crawl to the top of vegetation and wait for a person or animal to brush by them that they can crawl onto. Once full, they will drop off the host, digest, and adult females will lay eggs, and immature ticks will molt and develop into the next life stage (larva, nymph, adult).

Are fleas & ticks dangerous?

These parasites feed on numerous hosts, including dogs, cats, deer, rodents, raccoons, squirrels, and people. Their feeding habits allow both these pests to acquire and spread disease. Ticks are the biggest health threat to people and spread illnesses like Lyme disease, ehrlichiosis, and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.

Fleas also spread some diseases, and they transmit parasitic tapeworms to people and animals. But the more significant threat is the allergic reactions people and animals have to their saliva. Flea bites produce red, itchy, uncomfortable bites that can become infected due to excessive scratching.

Pets that become heavily infested with fleas can develop anemia due to blood loss and have hair loss and open sores due to excessive scratching.

Why do I have a flea & tick problem?

Fleas and ticks find themselves in your yard mainly because wild animals have brought them there. As animals move across your yard or choose it as a nesting site, they bring with them the fleas and ticks they are carrying on their backs. 

After coming into contact with fleas or ticks, you or your pets can bring them inside your home. Fleas breed rapidly, whether indoors or out, and quickly take over places. Ticks rarely become an issue inside our homes as most species cannot complete their life cycle without their eggs having contact with damp soil. 

Fleas are regularly found living indoors, and they can move into new structures inside things like secondhand rugs, upholstered furniture, bedding, and linens. Also, wild animals like rodents regularly bring fleas into our homes after moving inside to nest and forage for food.

Where will I find fleas & ticks?

Outside, both fleas and ticks like to hide in damp, dark areas, the humid Florida weather providing ample moisture for these pests to thrive. 

The damp soil under woodpiles, leaf piles, mulch, and landscaping plants are often where fleas and ticks gather. They also like to live in tall grass, along fence lines, foundations, and roadways. Ticks inhabit wooded areas in large numbers, and you'll also find them along wooded trails. 

People and pets can come into contact with these parasites in yards, fields, parks, wooded areas, walking trails, and other outdoor spaces.

How do I get rid of fleas & ticks?

Since 1980, the Green-Tech Termite and Pest Control professionals have been protecting people and properties in the Tampa Bay area from pests using our quality, affordable pest control services. We are a full-service, customer-oriented company dedicated to making sure the pest control services we perform are effective and eco-friendly. We know how frustrating these pests can be and how they affect your ability to enjoy your outdoor space. 

Our professionals will provide the fast action necessary to eliminate these troublesome pests and prevent their return. To learn more about fleas and ticks and how we can work together to get rid of them through our flea and tick control services, reach out to the professionals at Green-Tech Termite and Pest Control today!

How can I prevent fleas & ticks in the future?

Remove fleas and ticks from your property with the help of our professionals and the following prevention tips. 

  • Remove areas of overgrown vegetation from your yard.

  • Clear out leaves and grass clippings, and yard debris from your property.

  • Make sure gutters are working to direct rainwater away from the outside of your home.

  • Don't overwater your lawn; these pests do best in damp environments.

  • Keep your lawn's grass cut short.

  • Cut back overgrown areas or wooded areas back away from the perimeter of your property. 

  • Seal openings in the foundation, exterior walls, and roofline of your house to keep flea-infested rodents and animals out.

  • Regularly vacuum floors and upholstered furniture and wash bedding to remove stray fleas and ticks from your home.

Learn more about our home pest control and commercial pest control solutions.

 

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