Ticks in the Winter Months
It’s now started to get really cold in some parts of the U.S. Temperatures are dropping below freezing and there’s snow falling, but does this mean that we don’t need to worry so much about ticks in the winter months?
Do you have to worry about ticks in the winter?
The long and the short of it is… yes! You should be thinking about ticks all year round. There’s no need to ‘worry’ about them if you know how to protect yourself from ticks, but there is a need to be mindful that these pesky little critters, although not around nearly as much as they are in the summer, are still lurking about out there. Also, they are still hungry and they may still bite you if you leave yourself vulnerable to them. Here’s an article as to why you should protect yourself.
Heading outdoors in January? Don’t forget your DEET! While winter weather may mean most bugs are dormant, there’s one important arthropod you should still take steps to avoid. Blood-sucking, disease-carrying ticks may still be active in winter months.
Where do ticks go in the winter months?
Ticks become dormant in the winter. They want to keep warm, so they will either take shelter in a leafy or wooded area or they will latch onto something warm-blooded like a deer. And yes…. that means they could also latch onto us warm-blooded humans too!
Does the freezing weather kill ticks?
Ticks don’t die just because the weather is freezing. Instead, they head to a warm place where they will sit out the cold spells and come out when it’s a little bit warmer. If it’s snowing this can actually help to keep ticks warm because it will provide an insulating layer over the debris they may have used to take shelter.
How should you protect yourself from ticks in winter?
Just like you do in the summer! Wear sensible clothes that cover areas of skin that could be exposed to ticks (like long pants and long sleeves). Apply repellent and keep your tick control up to date.
So if you have some snow and plan to get outside and build a snowman, don’t just wrap up warm for the cold! Wrap up to keep yourself safe from ticks and when you go back indoors, make sure you check there’s no hitchhiking ticks trying to keep warm on YOU!