Description: Adults are approximately 3mm in length and brown to reddish in color. These pests are wingless and flat but have well developed legs that give them the ability to jump 6 inches straight up. Their mouths have piercing abilities, this allows them to feed off their blood source.
Habits: They feed of a blood source which is typically cats and dogs, but can look to other blood sources if neither is present. The adult flea remains on the food source for the remainder of their lifetime. Adult fleas can be knocked off the animal through scratching causing them to become present on carpets and animal bedding.
Treatment: Includes sanitation, on-animal treatment and insecticides. On-animal treatment is completed by the cooperative customer, not the pest control technician. Proper sanitation and removal of the larvae, and pupae is important in management of fleas. Both indoor and outdoor areas should be treated.
BLACKLEGGED TICK (DEER/BEAR TICK)
Description: This tick species is 1.5mm to 3mm in length with orange-brown body colored bodies. Their heads are dark brown. The bodies are flattened and tear drop shaped, until they are engorged from their feeding.
Habits: While larvae and adults typically feed off of deer and mice, the nymphs are the ones that feed off humans. The nymph stage is when Lyme Disease is spread. They climb through grass and shrub areas waiting for a host food source.
Treatment: Begins with removing garbage and pet foods that may attract larger animals or rodents. Removing high grass areas and mowing lawns helps to control the population by decreasing the areas in which they wait for their hosts. Pesticides, including liquid applications can be applied to areas of high population such as lawns.
Expert Tip: Always wear protective clothing (light colored long pants and longs sleeves). When removing an attached tick from yourself or pet, be sure to to remove the tick as a whole. Avoid breaking the head off leaving it attached to the skin.
BROWN DOG TICK
Description: When not engorged, the adult tick is approximately 3mm in length. Both males and females are reddish to brown in color. Their bodies are flat and tear dropped shaped. When the female ticks become engorged, their bodies go from reddish/brown to a blueish/grey in color. Both males and females have visible mouth parts when looked at from above.
Habits: More commonly found in homes when dogs are present, but can be seen on walls if the dog is infested. These ticks rarely feed off humans, but are commonly found to be the vector of Rocky Mountain spotted fever.
Treatment: Sanitation within the home by means of vacuuming areas of infestations or potential infestations should be completed. Pesticide application for tick control should be completed indoors and outdoors. Infested dogs should be treated by a veterinarian or the pet owner, not by they pest control technician or by means of pesticide application to the pet.
Fun Fact: An adult can live 18 months without feeding of its host source.
Description: When fully grown, they are 0.75mm to 0.85mm in size. This is slightly smaller than a pinhead. They are bright red to reddish-brown in color. Their front legs are about the same length as the body when fully extended.
Habits: They feed on grass, clovers and other plants around the home in order to feed off the plant sap. They do not cause any damage to homes or home foundations. They become more active in early summer and fall when lawns are over fertilized. Clover mites do not bite or cause any health-related problems.
Treatment: Use a sponge to clean them up to prevent red stains from occurring. Removing grass and weeds from the foundation perimeter. Make sure to not over fertilize lawns. They tend to move through packed soil easier than loose bare soil.
Fun Fact: When squished, they leave a red stain because of their natural red color, not because of their blood