Ticks are a growing threat to our public health system. As pest professionals, we have an opportunity to help our customers stay safe. Joe Barile, Technical Service Lead at Bayer, shares what you need to know about ticks and how to treat them.
1. Why should PMPs consider a tick service?
Ticks, regardless of where you live, bring serious health threats to your customers’ doorsteps. Tick service is an opportunity to grow your business while serving the public. Pest management professionals can provide an effective management service at great value to homeowners and property managers.
2. What environments are most conducive to breeding ticks?
Most ticks thrive in shady outdoor sites with a leaf-litter substrate under a foliage canopy. We typically find this environment just outside the border of managed landscapes. This “tick zone” area is the native environment of ticks’ first blood hosts, deer mice, chipmunks, ground squirrels and voles.
3. How do I treat for ticks?
Start by inspecting the property for conditions that are conducive to the tick-host relationship. Lawns and turf should be healthy and trimmed. Eliminate any clutter and stored items that provide shelter for tick-hosts. Treatments with labeled acaracides should be targeted to the “tick-zones” and areas where pets may frequent and rest. Unless treating for specific species, broadcast lawn treatments are not necessary.
4. Is there a specific product that Bayer recommends?
Labeled liquid concentrates from Bayer are effective and will provide residual control. A more convenient treatment is our DeltaGard G granular formulation. This low-dust granule can be effectively applied with hand-held spreaders very quickly with no extended re-entry period. Field trial data has demonstrated very impressive residual control from this formulation.
5. Should I plan on renewing the service every year?
Yes. Ticks’ end-hosts (deer, coyotes, skunks, raccoons) are the “re- infestation engine.” After mating on their hosts, gravid females drop from the host animal to lay her eggs (hundreds to thousands). Even in urban areas these animals will re-introduce ticks on properties continually.