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When you want to make the most of your outdoor spaces, fleas and ticks can get in the way. These small bloodsuckers are opportunistic parasites that can cause everything from simple, itchy bites to Lyme disease. Once fleas and ticks are established in your yard, it can be difficult to get rid of them, so here are some tips and tricks to help you deal with fleas and ticks in your yard.

What Are Fleas?

Fleas are small, dark-colored, wingless insects that live off the blood of mammals and birds. They are a type of pest that commonly affects dogs and cats, but can also infest humans. Fleas are parasitic, meaning they rely on their host for survival. The female flea will lay her eggs in the fur of her host animal, and the eggs will eventually hatch into larvae. The larvae will then spin a cocoon and emerge as an adult flea. Adult fleas will mate and the cycle will begin again. Fleas can be difficult to get rid of once they have infested an animal or home.

What Are Ticks?

Ticks are small, pest-like creatures that attach themselves to the skin of animals and humans. Most ticks are no bigger than a poppy seed, and they can be difficult to spot. Ticks are often found in wooded or grassy areas, and they can latch on to you when you brush against vegetation. Once a tick has attached itself, it will feast on your blood for several days. Ticks are a serious nuisance, and it is important to take steps to avoid them. Wearing long pants and sleeves when hiking in woods or tall grass is one way to reduce your risk of being bitten. If you do find a tick on your body, remove it immediately with tweezers or a Tick Key.

Signs of Fleas and Ticks in Your Yard

If you have fleas or ticks in your yard, there are several signs that you can look for. Since ticks are often found near the edges of wooded areas, and they may attach themselves to animals or humans who walk by. Fleas typically live in areas with high grass or leaf litter, and they can also jump onto passing animals or people. If you find ticks or fleas on your body after being in your yard, it’s likely that there are more of them in the area. You may also see small, dark spots on the ground, which are the feces of ticks and fleas. If you notice any of these signs, you should take steps to remove the fleas and ticks from your yard to prevent them from spreading.

Where Do Fleas and Ticks Live?

At Green Scene, our customers ask us all the time, “Do fleas and ticks live in tall grass?” The answer is a resounding, “Yes, both fleas and ticks hang out in tall grasses”. The shade, moisture, and protection provided by such environments are ideal for them to wait safely for you to come along – at which point, they hop onto your skin and begin to feed.

If your parents ever told you not to play in the tall grass as a kid, this is probably why. Spraying such areas with approved insecticides can be temporarily effective at decreasing the number of fleas and ticks, but keeping grassy areas cut short does the job just as well.

Are Fleas and Ticks Dangerous?

Treating your yard for fleas and ticks is one of the surest ways to prevent your loved ones from getting sick. According to the CDC, instances of tick-borne illnesses like Lyme Disease and Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever have doubled across America in the last 30 years. Just as bad, fleas are some of the most effective parasites at spreading diseases like Typhus.

Remember, fleas were also responsible for spreading Bubonic Plague (Black Death) across Europe in 1347. Troublingly, Plague still occurs in the US today, and keeping flea populations under control is one of the most effective ways to control it. Fleas and ticks can easily get into your home on pets and, once they’re in, they can be very difficult to get rid of.

How to Prevent Ticks and Fleas

Tick and Flea prevention is all about proper yard maintenance:

  • Keeping your lawn mowed and leaf litter to a minimum deprives ticks and fleas of their preferred environments.
  • Stacking firewood neatly and in a dry area helps keep rodents away and prevents them from bringing both fleas and ticks into your yard.
  • When setting up yard furniture, staging it away from trees and tall grasses helps prevent contact with ticks.
  • Setting up a 3-foot barrier of wood chips or gravel between your lawn and any wooded areas makes it difficult for ticks to migrate into your yard

How to Get Rid of Ticks and Fleas

Tick and Flea treatment is where you can go on the offensive:

  • Tick treatments are usually sprays applied to grassy areas that kill ticks on contact.
  • The application of preventative treatments such as tick tubes and other barrier treatments can also be effective at keeping ticks and tick-bearing animals away.
  • Tick treatment is also an ongoing process, repeated several times a year by a trained professional.

Keeping Your Yard Flea and Tick-Free

For such an important safety measure, trusting an experienced professional is always more reliable than a DIY approach to flea and tick control. At Green Scene Lawn and Pest, flea and tick control is a cornerstone of our lawn care service. Our expert flea and tick exterminators can provide reliable tick treatment for your yard, and flea treatment for your yard and home.

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