Ticks and Mosquitoes

Annoying and dangerous
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If there’s one thing you don’t want to bring home with you after a trip outdoors, it’s a tick. This pesky arachnid thrives in the summer time and is the primary culprit of Lyme disease in Massachusetts.


There are two species of ticks common in Massachusetts: the deer tick and the dog tick. An adult deer tick is substantially smaller than the more common dog tick, however size is not always a useful indicator since an engorged tick can be several times the size of one that has not fed.

While deer ticks carry Lyme disease, it is far better to avoid ticks altogether than to attempt to differentiate between deer ticks and dog ticks.

Life Cycle

Deer ticks have a two-year lifespan, and have three feeding stages: larva, nymph, and adult. Eggs are laid in the spring, and in the summer they hatch into larvae no larger than the period at the end of this sentence. In August, the larva reaches its peak of activity, waiting on the ground until a suitable host brushes up against it.

It attaches itself to the host (bird or mammal), and if the host is infected with the Lyme disease spirochete, the larva becomes infected as well. Once it has fed, it does not feed again until it becomes a nymph, so larvae are not able to transmit the disease.

The larva molts and transforms into a nymph in the fall, but does not become active until the following May and remains active through July. It waits for a host to brush by then attaches itself and feeds for four or five days, engorging itself with blood until it is several times its original size.

If it acquired the spirochete as a larva, it may transmit it to its host. A nymph is only the size of a poppy seed, so it is often not noticed until it is fully engorged. This stage is responsible for the majority of human Lyme disease cases.

Comprehensive Pest Control has a program to make your yard safe again.  This program targets ticks and mosquitoes. We use a granule treatment in the wooded area or leaf litter area that surrounds your yard to knock down the tick population significantly.  We are also going to use a liquid material that is applied to non flowering foliage that surrounds your house.  We are also going to apply a fog to the eaves and under porches and decks where mosquitoes tend to bread.

About Mosquitos
Almost everyone has had the unpleasant experience of being bitten by a mosquito. Mosquito bites can cause skin irritation through an allergic reaction to the mosquito's saliva - this is what causes the red bump and itching. But a more serious consequence of some mosquito bites may be transmission of serious diseases and viruses such as malaria, dengue virus, Zika and West Nile virus, which can lead to disabling and potentially deadly effects (such as encephalitis, and meningitis).

Not only can mosquitoes carry diseases that afflict humans, but they also can transmit several diseases and parasites that dogs and horses are very susceptible to. These include dog heart worms, eastern equine encephalitis and West Nile virus.
There are about 200 different species of mosquitoes in the United States, which live in specific habitats, exhibit unique behaviors and bite different types of animals. Despite these differences, all mosquitoes share some common traits, such as a four-stage life cycle (egg, larva, pupa, adult).

Different species of mosquitoes prefer different types of standing water in which to lay their eggs. The presence of beneficial predators such as fish and dragonfly nymphs in permanent ponds, lakes and streams help keep these bodies of water relatively free of mosquito larvae. However, portions of marshes, swamps, clogged ditches and temporary pools and puddles are all prolific mosquito breeding sites. Other sites in which some species lay their eggs include:

• tree holes,
• old tires,
• buckets,
• toys,
• potted plant trays and saucers,
• plastic covers or tarpaulins and even
• places as small as bottle caps!

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Comprehensive Pest Control is a family owned and operated business based in Holland, MA. As a family owned business you are not just a number to us. You are our #1 priority..

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