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How to Best Get Rid of Ticks in the Yard

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How to Best Get Rid of Ticks in the Yard

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Overview

Ticks carry several diseases, the most dangerous being Lyme disease and Spotted Rocky Mountain Fever. Ticks are in a category of arthropods (not insects) that are ectoparasites, which must have hosts in order to survive and reproduce. While you can spray an acaricidal spray to kill the ticks, the best way to get rid of the ticks in your yard for the long term is to eliminate their hosts. In the meantime, wear protective clothing and insect repellent that contains DEET, and always perform tick checks until your yard is virtually tick free.

Step 1

Wash your animals with an acaricidal soap that is safe for cleaning pets whenever you bathe them, usually about two to four times a month. (Read the directions on the soap's packaging carefully.) In addition, inspect them for ticks every time the return from an area where ticks are likely to be, like woods or a meadow. Manually remove any ticks you see, then give your pet a bath with the acaricidal soap.

Step 2

Remove woodpiles, overgrown brush, piles of leaves and other yard debris. Small animals, such as mice and rabbits, hide in those areas. Ticks use those small animals in order to live and breed. If you get rid of these animals, you help get rid of the ticks in your yard.

Step 3

Plant deer resistant plants (e.g., geraniums, daffodils) and/or put up a fence to keep the deer out. Usually, where there is deer, there are ticks since deer are popular hosts for ticks.

Step 4

Keep the trash can area clean and the lids on tight. This will keep not just the neighbor dogs away, but also other host creatures, such as raccoons and possums. Again, keeping host animals out of your yard will help keep the ticks out.

Things You'll Need

  • Acaricidal soap
  • Deer resistant plants

References

  • Alabama Cooperative Extension System: General Tick Biology and Control
  • Pesticide.org: Avoiding Tick Problems Without Using Pesticides

Who Can Help

  • Deer-Resistant Landscape Nursery: Deer-resistant Plants
Keywords: get rid of ticks, ticks in the yard, host animals

About this Author

Melissa Lewis graduated from the University of Maryland Baltimore County and is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has written over 20 episodes for the radio drama entitled "A Work in Progress." She also writes for several online outlets, including Gardenguides, Travels and Examiner, and is currently finalizing a movie script to be filmed in 2010.

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