Winter is often seen as the season of pest invasions. All sorts of critters are sneaking through the cracks in our walls and the gaps around our doors to find some warmth and shelter during the harshest season. While it’s rough out there for many, ticks are one of the more resilient pests in Central Iowa, able to tough it out through unfavorable conditions. If you’ve seen more ticks than you expected to this winter and are wondering what you can do to avoid them, read on for advice from the technicians at Springer Professional Home Services.
When is Tick Season in Central Iowa?
Ticks are one of the most feared pests in the state during the summer. When we walk our dogs or go on hikes, many of us try to steer clear of tall grass or densely wooded areas so as to not pick up ticks on our way back home. Ticks thrive in the heat, and especially in the combination of heat and humidity—they prefer to live in places averaging 85% humidity or higher.
So, if heat and humidity are so important to them, do ticks die in the winter? Although it isn’t an ideal season, ticks do what they can to make it through the cold, and do so in surprisingly high numbers. Here are some of the ways they adapt:
- If they find an unsuspecting host, they can latch onto them for a long time, hiding in their fur when they aren’t feeding.
- Without a host, ticks look for piles of leaf litter or other decaying foliage on the ground for shelter.
- For a more stable source of insulation and protection, soft-shelled ticks burrow underground.
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Avoiding Winter Ticks
Once temperatures consistently sit below 45 degrees, and especially when the ground is covered in ice, snow, or water, ticks have a difficult time finding eligible hosts. However, if you aren’t careful, they can still sneak up your leg or onto your pet’s back. These are a few ways we recommend that you take precautions against ticks this winter:
- Conduct tick checks when your pets come back inside. After a walk or running around in the yard, make sure your pets, dogs especially, don’t have any ticks hidden within their fur.
- Maintain your yard waste. If you let piles of leaves sit around for too long, they can easily become tick hotspots. Dispose of any yard waste as often as you can.
- Contact your local tick exterminators. A professional tick barrier treatment is the most effective method of keeping ticks out of your yard all year long.
Professional Tick Control for the Winter
Unfortunately, deer ticks, which have the ability to spread Lyme disease to humans, are about and about in the Des Moines area. To protect your family from these dangerous pests, make a plan with your local pest control company. At Springer Professional Home Services, we take the dangers of ticks very seriously, so we develop individualized plans for each of our customers to ensure that their tick control plan fits their property and their needs. For a free quote, contact our team today!
Do Ticks Die During the Winter? in Des Moines
Serving Central Iowa since 1989