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Mosquitoes and ticks aren’t just annoying, they can also carry devastating diseases. Both can make being outdoors less appealing, especially during those months when you and your family want to be outdoors as much as possible.

Learn the facts about these pests in New Jersey, as well as how to avoid getting bitten, how to control ticks and mosquitoes, and what you can do to make your property safer for your family.

Don't Get Bitten!

Protect your family with a highly-targeted tick and/or mosquito control program. Our comprehensive plan for mosquito and tick control offers both synthetic and organic options, including a hybrid program that's customized to your needs.

We’re All Snacks to Ticks & Mosquitoes

Both ticks and mosquitoes bite a range of warm blooded-animals for food, and it may be surprising to learn that humans aren’t always their favorite—often, we’re just conveniently located. We like to be out of doors in warm weather when ticks and mosquitoes are active, and we have gardens that make attractive homes for both.

close-up of a deer tick on a green leaf

Deer ticks are commonly found in New Jersey

Ticks in New Jersey

There are three types of ticks that transmit diseases in New Jersey, including:

  • the deer tick, also called the blacklegged tick (Ixodes scapularis)
  • the lone star tick (Amblyomma americanum),
  • the American dog tick (Dermacentor variabilis).

Ticks spread diseases to humans when they bite. Lyme disease (transmitted by blacklegged ticks) is the most common and well-known. In 2018, there were 96 cases of Lyme disease per 100,000 residents in Morris County alone. However, there are several other tick-borne diseases of concern in New Jersey:

A mosquito lands on an arm

Mosquitoes are pesky - and can spread disease

Mosquitoes in New Jersey

The mosquito genera most commonly found in New Jersey are Aedes, Anopheles, and Culex, although there are over 60 mosquito species in our state.

Adult mosquitoes can spread viruses when they bite you. Among the best-known diseases carried by these mosquitoes and passed to humans are:

NOTE: New Jersey is monitoring mosquitoes for the Zika virus and other diseases that can be spread to humans.

Flame on a citronella candle

Burning citronella candles outdoors can deter mosquitoes

How to Avoid Tick & Mosquito Bites

There are several ways that you can reduce your chances of being bitten by ticks and mosquitoes.

Mosquitoes are most active from dusk to dawn, and they locate their meals (us) by smell and temperature. You can keep them away from you by:

  • Wearing long sleeves and repellents when you’re outside
  • Burning citronella candles during outdoor evenings - but don’t burn citronella indoors
  • Installing screens over all the windows and doors you leave open

Ticks have a different life cycle than mosquitoes, but they are active during the warm months when we and our pets like to be outside. You should always:

  • Wear long sleeves and boots
  • Tuck pant legs into your socks
  • Spray your clothing and gear with repellent
  • After hiking or playing in areas where ticks can hide, remove your clothing before entering the house
  • Check your pets for ticks daily, as well as yourself if you’ve been in tick-infested areas

How to Keep Ticks & Mosquitoes Away From Your Yard

Landscape modifications, in combination with your personal changes, provide the greatest protection from both mosquitoes and ticks.

Tick Prevention Methods

Ticks are sensitive to changes in their environment, especially exposure and dryness. They also need a host, such as you, a bird, rodent, or deer, to attach to. You can make your garden less attractive to ticks by following these guidelines:

  • Mow your lawn
  • Clear weeds, brush, and leaf litter from around your lawn
  • Mulch a wood chip barrier path 3’ wide around your lawn, woodpile, and stone walls to separate them from overgrown, grassy, or brushy areas beyond
  • Remove brush, weeds, and debris from around stone walls and woodpiles, where both ticks and rodents can hide
  • Move birdfeeders and woodpiles (that attract birds and rodents) well away from the outdoor areas where people and pets spend time
  • Prune back branches and plants to keep areas around your house open to sunlight and air
  • Locate children’s play areas and equipment away from grassy, brushy, or overgrown areas, and use a layer of wood chip mulch as a play surface
  • Use non-toxic sprays as directed
  • Don’t grow garden plants that attract deer (deer are one of the most common carriers of ticks)

Herbs growing in planters, outdoors on a ledge. Green grass grows in the background.

Dump standing water from any objects in your yard (such as empty planters and saucers) to prevent mosquitoes from breeding

Mosquito Prevention Methods

Mosquitoes breed in water. The number-one thing to do to keep mosquito populations down is to remove any standing water from your garden and outbuilding areas. Even very shallow pools can host mosquito larvae.

  • Check stored tires, birdbaths, and outdoor pet bowls for standing water. Don’t forget to check plastic tarps covering equipment or materials.
  • Unclog gutters and downspouts
  • Overturn garden pots and saucers that could hold water
  • Drain any unused fountains, wading pools, or water features (moving water is fine, so add a pump or water circulator to still water in fountains or garden ponds)
  • Invite birds, bats, lizards, and other wildlife into your garden. They all eat mosquitoes and their larvae, and won’t bother you.
  • Don’t use bug zappers. These attract and kill beneficial insects and pollinators, and very few mosquitoes.

NOTE: As much as we all hate mosquitoes, they and their larvae are important food sources for many animals!

Tick & Mosquito Spraying

Close-up of a lone star tick on a plant stem

Lone star ticks are another type of tick you may encounter in New Jersey

Both adult mosquitoes and ticks can spread viruses (like West Nile and Lyme) that make you sick. To prevent this, it's often necessary to spray insecticides that kill one or both of these pests.

State, counties, and municipalities frequently monitor pest populations to show when the numbers throughout a community have increased to the point where the risk of being bitten becomes unacceptably high (and, therefore, the incidence of tick- and mosquito-borne diseases also goes up). Often, these governments will choose to use tick and mosquito control applications to reduce the populations over a wide area.

However, a regional spray program doesn't mean your property will be free from mosquitoes or ticks.

If you notice that they're becoming more bothersome, or you're worried about your family's health, then it's time to start a mosquito and tick control program.

At that point, it's best to call in the professionals to apply highly-targeted insecticides to kill ticks and mosquitoes. These special pesticides help reduce the number of mosquitoes or ticks in an area and reduce the risk that people will get sick.

Don't Delay!

Spring is just around the corner, so don’t put off preparing for tick and mosquito season!

You can keep your family healthy and your garden safe by following the guidelines above and by encouraging natural garden predators to do their jobs.

If that's not enough, we offer a comprehensive plan for mosquito and tick control. We offer both synthetic and organic options, including a hybrid program that's customized to your needs.

Call us today at 973-964-7798 to learn more!

Don't Delay!

Protect your family with a highly-targeted tick and/or mosquito control program. Our comprehensive plan for mosquito and tick control offers both synthetic and organic options, including a hybrid program that's customized to your needs.

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