How Do Ticks ‘Stick’ To Our Skin?

Ever wondered how ticks get such a good grip of our skin when they bite us? That’s because they make their own type of ‘glue’ we guess you’d call it, that let’s them adhere firmly to their feast. The clever little critters create their own cement so that they can stay put while they feed. Here’s an article with more information.

Bloodsucking Ticks Make Cement to Attach to Your Skin

Hard ticks—a family of 700 species that includes the Lyme-spreading deer tick—use pincer-like appendages and mouths to attach to a host’s skin. But sometimes this grip isn’t strong enough for the arachnid to hold on and feed while the host moves. Sylvia Nürnberger and colleagues discovered hard ticks have an extra tool to glom onto their hosts’ skin—a kind of glue made of proteins in their saliva.

This cement that they create could actually shine a little positive light on these disease spreading pests, because it could possibly be used as a medical adhesive. It works a little bit like and anesthetic too, so that when a tick bites it’s host they don’t feel it. This is good because we don’t get the pain, but very bad because we don’t know when we’re being bitten!


Could this discovery mean that ticks can help to save lives, instead of cause misery?

Tick spit could save hearts and lives

Although ticks are generally thought of as being the spreaders of illness, they may actually be able to help save peoples’ lives. According to a new study from the University of Oxford, proteins found in tick saliva could be used to treat a potentially fatal heart disease. The disease, myocarditis, typically strikes young adults. It occurs when the heart becomes infected due to a common virus. This causes it to release chemicals called chemokines, which attract cells that cause inflammation. As a result, the heart muscle becomes dangerously inflamed.

Of course, when it comes to a tick bite, tick prevention is better than cure. The number of tick borne illness is constantly on the rise, so there’s never a time to be complacent about the damage such a tiny arachnid can cause.

 

How Do Ticks ‘Stick’ To Our Skin? first appeared on:

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The More Ticks The Merrier!

The more ticks the merrier! Not something you would often find us saying, but research has suggested that if your back yard has an abundance of ticks that are of a diverse species, then the number of tick species that carry Borrelia burgdorferi (the bacteria that causes Lyme disease) would likely decline, as the diversity of host species for ticks increases.  This is known as the dilution effect and the following article has more information.

Why the Variety of Tick Hosts in Your Back Yard Might Be a Good Thing

Researchers studying the spread of Lyme disease have closely investigated the dynamics involved among ticks, their animal hosts, humans, and the habitats in which they all live. One principle that has come to be understood is the dilution effect, which suggests that the abundance of the pathogen Borrelia burgdorferi (the bacteria that causes Lyme disease) falls as the diversity of host species for ticks increases.

Don’t get us wrong! We’re not encouraging the need for more ticks and it’s still just as important as it ever was to make sure your tick control is kept up to date for your back yard. We’ll share just something positive about ticks  in this post… for a change.

Remember, don’t be misled into thinking that we can lower our guard against these disease spreading pests. It’s not that often we’ll find something positive to say about them. But everything on this planet deserves a chance to demonstrate their place…right? So we’re giving these creepy arachnids their moment of glory, before we go back to warning you all about how you need to keep protecting yourself. We’ll give them their 5 minutes in the limelight (or more appropriately ‘lymelight) to be at the center of public attention for a positive reason!

 

The More Ticks The Merrier! first appeared on:

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Tick & Mosquito Control Clifton VA

For tick & mosquito control service in Clifton and Fairfax County Virginia, contact:

Backyard Bug Patrol
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Tick & Mosquito Control Clifton VA first appeared on:

Backyard Bug Patrol
901 Cantle Ln
Great Falls, VA 22066
(703) 621-7116
https://goo.gl/maps/H4QoAjULFBJ2

Maryland Drivers Warned of Weather Hazard (and Mosquitoes)

We’ve been talking a lot lately about the impact the freezing weather is having on the mosquito population. The low temperatures may lead us to think that mosquitoes will reduce in number, however, these resilient little creatures can survive the colder weather, and they’ll be back to make our lives a misery in the upcoming warmer months. For those of you in the Baltimore-Washington area of Maryland, temperatures are set to drop once again, but it’s not just mosquitoes we need to think about, it’s taking to the treacherous roads in hazardous weather.

Weather Hazard For Maryland Commuters Looms: Forecasters

The Wednesday morning commute for those in the Baltimore-Washington area may be more complicated than usual. An inch or two of snow is expected to fall in the region Tuesday night and continue through Wednesday morning, making the area’s packed roads slick, according to a special weather statement from the National Weather Service.

We mentioned previously that we wanted to bring you more local news in our posts, especially where we can help share the knowledge concerning public safety. So if you’re preparing for your morning commute, please be safe!

The weather can change so quickly. Just before Christmas residents in Gaithersburg, MD were warned that the anticipated warmer weather, could turn to snow. Being prepared for quick shifts in weather is sound advice.

Christmas Snow Suddenly Possible In Gaithersburg

GAITHERSBURG, MD — Recent forecasts had suggested lots of warmth leading up to and including Christmas, with snow entering the picture just afterward, but the latest forecast has suddenly shifted. New models now show a cold front will move through the D.C. area by Christmas, according to a report from the Washington Post’s Capital Weather Gang.

Now we know that stepping into our motor vehicles in unpleasant weather conditions will flag up instinct to err on the side of caution, so we’re not telling you anything you don’t already know. It’s just to raise awareness. We like to give our customers and our readers gentle reminders when it comes to looking out for each other. And as you know, especially when it comes to protecting ourselves from mosquitoes, but we don’t just stop there.

The freezing weather may not kill off these disease spreading mosquitoes in Gaithersburg, MD, but when we step into our vehicles, we constantly put ourselves at risk. And in this weather, those risks are even higher. Be safe everyone!

Maryland Drivers Warned of Weather Hazard (and Mosquitoes) first appeared on:

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Mosquitoes Are Still Alive And Waiting During The Hard Freeze

With so many parts of the United States succumbing to the ‘hard freeze’ that has seen record low temperatures, many questions have been raised as to whether mosquitoes will survive the cold weather. Could this perhaps lead to a drop in the population of these disease spreading beasts in the months ahead. Here’s an article with some information.

Will the winter blast kill mosquitoes?

After snow and back to back freezes you would expect the icy fatal blow to squash the mosquito nuisance come springtime, but think again. We all know the itchy feeling of getting bit by mosquitoes but the winter months has slowed the bites. But surprisingly the cold does not kill the eggs and and once the temperatures warm up the bugs attack again.

So it looks like this killer cold snap, isn’t enough to kill off mosquitoes! When the weather warms up, these pests will continue to develop just in time to cause havoc.


So even though you may not be seeing many mosquitoes right now, it doesn’t mean that they’ve disappeared. They’re just lying dormant until temperatures rise. They are very much still alive and waiting, but can as many survive?

Does all this cold weather mean there will be fewer mosquitoes next summer?

The snow is blowing sideways outside, and the temperature is stuck somewhere between ‘brrrrrr’ and ‘Holy Fahrenheit and Lord Celsius, whyyyyy?!?’ It’s awful out there, and we’re only a few days into the year. So is there anything we can look forward to? Any upside to the massive chill pill being forced down our throats? Maybe the cold will kill off the cold-blooded bloodsuckers that make our lives hell in warmer weather?

Not necessarily. While a mild winter can lead to more bugs than usual the reverse is not necessarily true.

Now may be the perfect time to check that you’ve got your mosquito control up to date and ready for the ‘awakening’ because when these pests wake up, they’re gonna be seriously hungry!

Mosquitoes Are Still Alive And Waiting During The Hard Freeze first appeared on:

Backyard Bug Patrol
901 Cantle Ln
Great Falls, VA 22066
(703) 621-7116
https://goo.gl/maps/H4QoAjULFBJ2

Food Myths That Prevent Mosquito Bites

There are many facts and myths when it comes to what works and what doesn’t at keeping mosquitoes at arms length (or preferably at an even further distance!) The types of food you eat, the color of your clothing, certain plants that help battle the bug! The list goes on, but what we know confidently works is a barrier spray in your back yard to keep these bothersome pests away from your outdoor enjoyment.

9 of the biggest myths about mosquitoes, debunked

There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to controlling mosquitoes. Despite what you may have heard, the food you eat won’t affect your chances of being bitten, and neither will buying a bunch of citronella candles. To help you separate fact from fiction, we spoke to Dr. Stan Cope, president of the American Mosquito Control Association and the director of entomology and regular services at Terminix. From what types of repellents actually work to why the bloodsuckers bite you in the first place, here’s the scoop on mosquitoes.

Here are a few more myths. This time when it come to the food we eat, many people believe that certain drinks or types of food may turn the nose of a mosquito so they don’t see them as a tasty bite on the human menu.

Looks like unfortunately, they’re not as safe from these disease spreading pests as they thought.

What can I eat to stop mosquitoes biting me?

The warm weather is beckoning us into the backyard but pesky bloodsuckers are waiting. Insect repellents are safe and effective but many people are reluctant to rub what they perceive to be smelly or sticky on their skin. Wouldn’t it be great if there was something you could eat or drink to protect yourself from mosquito bites?  There are plenty of “mozzie busting” gadgets and gimmicks marketed as alternatives to topical formulations. From wrist bands to smartphone apps, the range of products reflects the demand among the public for these products. Unfortunately, few of these provide effective protection.

The safest way to protect yourself from mosquitoes is to continue tucking into your favorite snacks and drinks… of course! But you need to make sure you wear repellent. It might not smell as nice as a banana, but it’s going to keep you safe!

 

 

 

Food Myths That Prevent Mosquito Bites first appeared on:

Backyard Bug Patrol
901 Cantle Ln
Great Falls, VA 22066
(703) 621-7116
https://goo.gl/maps/H4QoAjULFBJ2