Diatomaceous Earth for Ticks
When talking about tick control many of us look the other way as we do not want a tick infestation. Such a horrible bloodsucking parasitic arachnid that makes the lives of many terrible during the warm season. Many different products are on the market currently that may work but are so toxic that I would not dare let my pets or children play around it. Some of these products are insecticides designed to kill ticks but will also kill your pets or kids if they are not careful. Spring is coming and we want to be sure that all of you have the right information to help repel and stop ticks from infesting your home and areas around your home without the need or even the thought of insecticidal poisons.
How to Identify a Tick
Ticks are roughly the size of a sunflower seed and have 8 legs they use to crawl and hang on fur or clothing. Some say they resemble a small spider with a fat body. Ticks are arachnids so that makes sense. Some are brown, some are red, and some are all black just depending on the area or state you are currently in. Wooded areas, brush, lawns, shelter belts, are all places where ticks can hide waiting to start leaching blood from animals or humans.
What do Tick Bites Look and Feel like?
Tick bites are commonly not dangerous and leave just a simple red puncture mark where they were attached to your skin. However, some people and pets are allergic to the bite and some ticks even carry harmful diseases that could be life threatening if not treated properly. In most common cases you will have a red mark and little irritation where the tick bit you. Give your body time to heal and it will gone in no time. When a person has an allergic reaction to the bite they will experience pain, burning, and swelling at the site. Other symptoms may include a rash or blisters at the site and in some severe cases, shortness of breath.
Tick Behavior & Life Cycle
Ticks are found all over the United States. Of the many tick species, many live in the wild, feeding only on animals. Some common species inhabit our homes and feed on us and our pets.
The tick life cycle consists of four stages. Tick adults lay eggs. Newly-hatched ticks, known as larvae, grow into nymphs and later become adult ticks. Larvae, nymphs, and adult females all feed on blood. If a host is infected with a tick-borne disease, it can infect the tick, which may pass the disease to its next host.
How to Apply Diatomaceous Earth to Kill Ticks
Most tick infestations start in your home when a tick attaches themselves to a pet or yourself. Ticks then either attach themselves to your skin or they may fall off and slowly scurry to a hiding place. As of late, a disease called Lyme has made its way into mainstream news and deer ticks and other ticks are known to carry this debilitating disease.
Many of us have a large tick population in our yards and it’s troublesome to send your kids or pets outside anymore. Who wants 15 ticks on your dog after spending an hour outside? Nobody, and the fact that those ticks can get into the house, yuck! Really, there is no way to rid every tick from your yard. They are so invasive that you would have to make it look like a bakery exploded in your yard by applying diatomaceous earth to every square inch or you could simply remove the foliage and grass completely. Both of those options are not practical so we will give you some tips and tricks when using diatomaceous earth to rid ticks from your yard. We highly recommend our crawling insect control bundles. Lets take a look at how to apply diatomaceous earth to kill ticks!
Indoor Application Instructions
Step 1: Cleanliness is the most important step here and needs to happen before you apply diatomaceous earth. These little bloodsuckers can hide in furniture, stored clothes, rugs, drapes, for very long periods of time. So get out your vacuum and start vacuuming your furniture, fabrics, rugs, and wash all clothes on the highest heat setting possible and dry on the highest heat setting when you can. This method sucks up many ticks hidden there. Going that extra mile by moving furniture and appliances to get to those places is a must! This cleaning again is essential in your battle to rid them!
Step 2: We recommend you apply your DE to where the carpet or flooring meets the baseboard or wall. We also suggest that you apply to entryways to your home like window and door frames. Apply to and in furniture, rugs, fabrics, and drapes. Please apply in a light and visible fashion.
Step 3: Leave application down on those locations for 7 days and then vacuum the application up. Please note that a shop vac will work better as a normal vacuum may become troublesome if you vacuum too much at once. Wash the drapes or fabrics that you can again.
Step 4: Repeat steps 1-3 until the problems gone!
Outdoor Application Instructions
Step 1: Ticks hitch a ride with animals and rodents so be sure to mark locations where you may have seen rodents or animals like deer, rabbits, or squirrels. These locations could be buildings next to your home, groups of trees, piles of wood, compost piles, sheds, barns, unattached garage, and anything else you built around your home. You may want to clean these areas if they have any debris. If you find holes or indentations in the ground, fill them back in. Level them off with your yard grounds. Like you see below, unstack and restack your wood to free any ticks in the woodpile.
Step 2: Leaf litter you find during the beginning is a hot spot for tick activity and let me tell you, they love to hang out at this location. Be sure you rake up all that dead leaf material and dispose of it well away from your home and yard. Keep the ticks from mating and increasing the population. Keep your grass cut and trim those hedge bushes to keep them away from there also.
Step 3: Leaf litter you find during the beginning of the warm season is a hot spot for tick activity and let me tell you, they love to hang out at this location. Be sure you rake up all that dead leaf material and dispose of it well away from your home and yard. Keep the ticks from mating and increasing the population. Keep your grass cut and trim those hedge bushes to keep them away from there also.
Step 4: According to the CDC, it is very wise to form a 3-foot wide barrier of wood chips or gravel between lawns and wooded areas (Groups of trees) to diminish tick migration into your area. Be sure to cut your lawn regularly and keep any swing sets, decks, or patios as far away from the edge of the trees or wooded area as possible. At least 8 feet away! Construct a fence around your property to keep out unwanted rodents from populating in your yard and increasing tick populations. Also clean trash, compost piles, and undisturbed areas. Keep rodents from nesting and giving you a tick headache!
Step 5: Be sure to apply diatomaceous earth to the outside foundation of your home, any unattached buildings, and around wood piles, compost piles, and anything that is considered clutter that you are not able to move off your property. Apply a light and visible application to your pets fur coat and skin is a wise idea also. Do this 1-2 times a month during tick season and every time a rain washes the application away.