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Smart Tips for Eliminating Ticks in Your Yard

Smart Tips for Eliminating Ticks in Your Yard

Warmer weather has people spending more time outside, soaking up the sun, tending gardens and enjoying wide-open playtime. That increased time spent outdoors also puts people at greater risk of encountering ticks, tiny arachnids that inhabit woody areas, brushy fields and can be found close to your home. Ticks thrive on eating blood from their hosts and can pass infections directly to humans. Lyme disease is one of several illnesses that you can contract from an infected tick that bites you. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to eliminate ticks in your yard this season.

How can you reduce tick infestation? The Centers for Disease Control offers the following advice: .

Apply pest control — Consistent, timely and easy to apply pest control is essential to keeping ticks from taking over your yard. Fortunately, an acaricide is fairly inexpensive and safe provided that you apply it according to the instructions on the label. Your local hardware store should have a supply on hand. .

Time your pest control — The first warm days are not the best time for applying acaricide notes the CDC. Instead, wait until May or early June when ticks are in their nymphal stage. There may be some variation in application timing where you live, therefore contact your local agricultural officials for local information. Consider using a pesticide services company to handle the application of acaricides, a licensed business that is recognized by your state. .

Remove tick-friendly materials — You may be inadvertently contributing to the increase of ticks in your yard by leaving certain materials in place that should be removed. Leaf litter, tall grasses and brush around the home, unstacked wood and old furniture can attract and house ticks. Certain animals such as stray dogs, deer and raccoons can carry ticks and should be kept off of your property. The CDC recommends that a 3-foot barrier of wood chips or gravel be placed between wooded areas and lawns, and recreational areas such as playground equipment. If you’re planning to be away for a lengthy time this summer, make arrangements for someone to cut your grass. .

The tick population is confined mostly to the central and coastal regions of the country. The worse areas span from southern New England through New Jersey, where the highest concentration of host-seeking nymphal can be found according to the American Lyme Disease Foundation.