Fleas & Ticks

What are fleas and ticks?

Parasitical pests such as fleas and ticks are creatures that heavily rely on the consumption of human blood. These insects can feed on almost any warm-blooded mammal, with humans as a particular favorite.

a flea on human skin in virginia beach

Fleas cannot be seen by the naked human eye. These pests are extremely small and leave patches of ‘flea dirt’ (excrement) behind on the people or pets they infest. Ticks are arachnids that are small, oval-shaped, and parasitical by nature. These pests latch onto humans and burrow their heads into the skin in order to extract necessary nutrients for survival.

Are fleas and ticks dangerous?

Blood-feeding pests are historically considered to be some of the more dangerous creatures found in modern homes. Both etymologists and epidemiologists agree that flea feeding, activity, and behavior were a large part of the Black Plague epidemic in early Renaissance history. As the most deadly pandemic recorded in human history, the Black Death destroyed a significant portion of the population, up to 200 million people at its height. Flea bites may not seem serious, but they have the potential to spread many pathogens.

Ticks are much the same. These pests come from a wide variety of species, each of which is capable of spreading many different types of diseases. Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever and Lyme Disease are two examples of region-separated illnesses.

Why do I have a flea and tick problem?

Flea and tick issues are increasingly common in our area, mainly due to animal activity and pet behavior. Fleas and ticks do not target people or their homes in terms of ‘flavor’ or ‘kind,’ but rather in terms of accessibility. If you or your pets frequent areas with a high volume of vegetation, you could be exposing yourself to additional risks. 

Even pets that are not considered indoor animals can spread fleas or ticks to your family. Fleas can live in rugs, pet beds, and carpeted areas while they wait for a new victim to pass nearby. Some varieties of ticks can live for several years without feeding and may jeopardize your health significantly over time.

Where will I find fleas and ticks?

Fleas and ticks are commonly found in wilderness areas or unkempt backyards and garden beds. Most fleas will be carried into the home on the backs of animals or pets. Some rodent species such as rats and mice create secondary flea infestations simply from being nearby. 

Dangerous parasitical pests like ticks are picked up in areas with tall grasses or thick shrubbery. Hiking trails, campsites, and garden beds are particular favorites. By waving their arms around in what is known as ‘questing’ behavior, ticks locate and latch on to potential victims. They will remain latched to a victim until they are too engorged to remain attached and fall off. Ticks can, in fact, return to a host for blood meals, and are not one-time occurrences. If you or your pet has suffered a tick infestation that has not yet been dealt with, you may have a returning outbreak in the near future.

How do I get rid of fleas and ticks?

Infestations from fleas and ticks pose immediate health concerns for members of your household and those who visit your property.  Removing a serious infestation should begin with help from Mosquito Elite Pest Control. Call for a no-obligation inspection now. 

How can I prevent fleas and ticks in the future?

To reduce the population of parasitic pests from entering the property, start with prevention:

  • Have all pets treated with flea and tick products. 

  • Keep vegetation in the yard trimmed and well maintained. 

  • Discourage wearing shorter clothes in areas that have high flea or tick populations.

  • Spray your clothing with a CDC-approved insecticide.

  • Regularly check yourself, your children, and your pets for ticks. If you find an embedded tick, seek medical attention.

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