What Are These Ticks with White Dots?
May 15, 2017
We are in for the worst tick season yet. Are you prepared? Chances are you have already started seeing ticks around your Little Rock home. What type of tick is lurking in your back yard? Have you seen the ticks with white dots on them? They are lone star ticks, and they can ruin your summer plans quickly.
Identifying Lone Star Ticks
You don’t have to live in Texas to see lone star ticks. Lone star ticks are found throughout most of the United States. They have been found down in Texas and all the way up in Maine. If you have ticks in your yard with white spots on their backs, you are looking at a female lone star tick.
Dangers of Lone Star Ticks
Lone star tick populations have exploded over the past couple decades, and they have their sights set on you and your pets. They are aggressive and transmit illness when they feed on blood.
Are lone star ticks dangerous like deer ticks are? The most common disease spread by ticks is Lyme disease, but the CDC reports that lone star ticks do not appear to transmit this debilitating disease.
Lone star ticks feed on human blood and other animals, including your pets. If you think you have been bitten by a lone star tick, you will notice redness and swelling in the area. The bite will be irritating and uncomfortable as the saliva enters your body, but it is unlikely that you will contract Lyme disease.
The bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi that causes Lyme disease is not the same bacterium that causes swelling and a rash from a lone star tick bite.
Lone star ticks give hosts rashes that lead to illness, or STARI (southern-tick related illness). Symptoms of STARI are:
Itching and burning rash
Irritation at the site
STARI does not lead to the same illness or symptoms found in those with Lyme diseases. Symptoms of Lyme disease include the above concerns as well as neurological concerns, arthritis, swollen lymph nodes, and chronic pain.
How to Protect Yourself from Lone Star Ticks
If you see a tick with a spot on its back in your yard, on your skin, or on your pet, you need to take measures to prevent and protect.
Wear brightly colored clothing (better to identify ticks)
Wear a bug repellent with DEET
Use flea and tick medicine on pets
Keep skin covered
Treat your lawn and shrubs with a tick control method
Tackling ticks on your own is nearly impossible. You need professional services to treat and control ticks on your property. Call McCauley Services if you see lone star ticks in your yard. McCauley Services uses a tick control method that creates a barrier around your home and kills ticks with regular monthly treatments that will keep you and your family safe all spring and summer.