Four Easy & Effective Tick Control Tips For Washington D.C. Property Owners

How well do you understand ticks? Do you know that ticks are brought into your yard by wildlife? Do you know that they detach from wildlife, climb to the tops of grass blades, and wait to hop onto your pets, or onto you? Do you know that mice and rats can bring ticks into your home and spread them around? If you don't understand how ticks get into your Washington D.C. home, ticks can present a serious threat to your health. Ticks are able to transmit Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, and many other dangerous diseases. Today, we're going to take a look at four easy and effective tick control tips that take into consideration the behavior pattern and habitat preferences of ticks.

deer tick biting skin

1. Protect Your Pet

The first, and most important, step in tick control is to protect your pet. Talk to your veterinarian about a flea and tick collar. While a collar won't' completely protect your dog or cat from ticks, it is an essential piece to the tick-control puzzle. Also, keep in mind that a collar isn't right for every animal or every family. This is why we recommend discussing this with your veterinarian.

2. Get Control Of Wildlife

Ticks don't hop into your yard. They are carried into your yard by wild animals. A cute little chipmunk can have dozens of ticks on it—and that isn't cute at all. Everything you do to reduce wildlife activity around your home can reduce ticks near your home.

  • Keep your bagged trash in a secure container that is covered. Your trash is a food source for animals.

  • Keep your lawn trim to make your yard feel less inviting to some animals.

  • Remove unnecessary vegetation in your landscaping to reduce hiding places for timid animals, like mice.

  • Remove lawn clutter and pick up discarded toys. There are many objects that can provide a location of harborage for animals.

  • Apply fencing to prevent animals from building a den or nest underneath your deck, porch, shed, and other structures.

  • If you have bird feeders, move them to at least 20 feet from your exterior. You would be amazed at how many tick-carrying animals are attracted to bird seed as a food source.

  • Install fencing around fruit trees, berry bushes, gardens, and plants that are being nibbled on by animals.

  • If you have raccoons and other large animals that explore your property at night, consider installing a motion-sensitive visual deterrent. A sudden flicker of light can send animals running.

  • Wild animals eat bugs. If you have a moist perimeter around your home, you'll have more bugs for animals to feed on.

3. Seal Your Exterior

Most wildlife will move about in your yard and never consider coming into your home. But we have two pests that commonly get inside. You can probably guess which two animals we're talking about. Yes, mice and rats. These two rodents love living in man-made structures and, once they get in, they're able to spread ticks to every floor. Deter rodents from getting into your home by:

  • Sealing gaps around pipes and other foundation penetrations.

  • Checking screens and making sure they're in good repair.

  • Inspecting your exterior doors and windows for gaps, cracks, and holes created by wood-damaging pests. If you find entry points, use a caulking gun to seal them until you can get things properly fixed.

  • Inspecting your sole plates and filling in any holes caused by water damage, wood rot, or pest damage.

4. Get Some Help

Pest control is a science. When you have routine visits from a licensed professional, you'll get layers of protection to keep wildlife from frequenting your property. More important than this, a pest control plan can provide a direct reduction of ticks in key areas on your property. If you like having cute chipmunks, squirrels, raccoons, and other animals hanging out in your yard, routine treatments to your landscaping are the best way to let those animals share your space without presenting a threat to your health, and also the health of your pets.

If you live in the D.C. area, contact Capitol Pest to set up a pest control plan for your property. We have many options to help you get control of the pests that are a concern for you. 

 

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