Be Prepared for Warm Winter Days and A Lot of Ticks
Ticks bug everyone and because of the diseases they carry, they are a real threat to humans and our health. Most people believe ticks are only active in the late spring, summer, and early fall, but ticks are finding hosts and are active all year round, whenever the temperature is above 40 degrees. East End Tick and Mosquito Control® has begun treating many of our clients’ properties for year-round tick protection with incredible results. We perform our traditional spray programs every four weeks from April to November, install tick tubes in the spring and fall, and perform granular tick treatments in December and March, creating a year-round integrated tick control program that works.
How Climate Affects the Tick Population
Climate plays a big role when it comes to the tick population, and some years are much worse for ticks than others. The summer we’re currently experiencing and can determine how active ticks will be in the later months. For example, ticks thrive in humidity and a wet year can both boost tick populations and increase the number of places they reside in. A warm winter can add weeks of activity for the animals that ticks feed on, which causes them to spread to areas where humans are, becoming an increasing threat to our health.
Warm winter days makes ticks a year-round problem in the northeast. Some of the more prevalent ticks in the northeast are the deer tick (black-legged tick), brown dog tick, American dog tick, Lone Star tick, and the recently arrived Asian Long Horned tick. Forecasters predicted that this year’s tick population would be larger than usual, and here on Long Island they predicted correctly. Forecasters saw that this year’s spring and summer temperatures were expected to be around the regional average but more precipitation was anticipated, which later caused tick populations to be above average.
When preparing for the 2020 tick season, it’s important to remember ticks on those warm winter days. Weather affects the tick population because of the role it plays in a tick’s reproductive cycle, so it’s essential to keep the forecast in mind. A female tick is only able to lay eggs in a wet, warm environment and once the egg hatches the new tick will need to feed off a host for every step of its development. A humid environment is essential for ticks to reproduce and a wet winter and early spring can cause female ticks to lay more eggs than usual.
Weather later becomes more of a factor largely because of the effect it has on tick hosts such as mice, deer, and other animals. If the mouse population increases, tick larvae and nymphs will have an easier time finding hosts and thus make it easier to move onto the next stage of development. Summer and fall months that are warmer than usual will also make the hosts more active and increase the likelihood that ticks will be carried into areas that humans are in, making it easier for them to latch onto you. Be prepared!
Be sure to visit the pests.org site to view their predications for spring 2020 as it gets closer. Remember, ticks are still active in the fall and on warm winter days so don’t forget to schedule your tick control treatment today.