Mosquito-Borne Illness: Eastern Equine Encephalitis

As one of the deadliest animals in the world, mosquitoes transmit a number of harmful, and often fatal, diseases. The most well known of these diseases include malaria, Zika virus, and West Nile virus.

In our last Mosquito-borne Illness Spotlight, we focused on malaria, a mosquito-borne illness that causes hundreds of thousands of deaths per year. In addition to these illnesses, mosquitoes are also responsible for transmitting a disease known as Eastern Equine Encephalitis. 

Eastern Equine Encephalitis (EEE) is one of the lesser-known diseases spread by mosquitoes. However, it can be quite serious, often leading to devastating effects. At Mosquito Authority, we make it a priority to educate our customers on not only how to practice mosquito control but also the negative and potentially harmful effects mosquitoes can have.

Here is some basic information about Eastern Equine Encephalitis and steps to prevent mosquito bites in and around your home:

Where does Eastern Equine Encephalitis most often occur?

Mosquitoes can be found all over the world, although only certain species are responsible for EEE. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), most cases of EEE in the United States occurred in Massachusetts, Michigan, Florida, Georgia, New York, and North Carolina from 2010-2019. 

What is Eastern Equine Encephalitis?

Eastern Equine Encephalitis is transmitted by mosquitoes of the Aedes, Coquillettidia, and Culex species. Although it is extremely rare, EEE can have very serious symptoms. Symptoms of EEE can range from fever and joint pain to encephalitis (swelling of the brain) and meningitis (swelling of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord). According to the CDC, about a third of EEE cases are fatal, while many survivors end up with mild to severe brain damage. 

How is Eastern Equine Encephalitis transmitted?

EEE is transmitted to humans or animals through the bite of an infected mosquito. Similar to malaria, EEE cannot be directly transmitted from person to person. According to the CDC, “Transmission [of EEE] to humans requires mosquito species capable of creating a “bridge” between infected birds and uninfected mammals such as some Aedes, Coquillettidia, and Culex species…”

What precautions can be taken to help prevent mosquito bites around the home?

Taking the proper precautions when it comes to mosquito-proofing your yard and home is critical to mosquito control. Here are some ways you can help lower the risk of getting bitten by mosquitoes in your own outdoor space:

  • To reduce your children’s risk of mosquito bites, dress them in clothing that covers their arms and legs.
  • Always apply sunscreen before applying mosquito repellent.
  • Always be sure to use an EPA-registered mosquito repellent and read the label and instructions thoroughly.
  • Empty any items in your yard that can hold water such as flower pots, tire swings, birdbaths, and children’s toys.
  • Keep patio or outside doors closed when possible to keep mosquitoes outside.
  • Hire a professional mosquito control company

Mosquitoes are not only a nuisance, but they are also vectors for dangerous diseases. While DIY mosquito control is important, the best way to reduce your risk of mosquito bites and mosquito-borne illness at home is to hire a professional mosquito control company. At Mosquito Authority, our priority is ensuring your safety from mosquitoes and the diseases they carry.


To find your local mosquito control company, click here.

Tick-Borne Illness: Lyme Disease

At Mosquito Authority, we do more than rid your yard and home of mosquitoes; we also offer tick control to protect you and your family from ticks and the diseases they carry. You might just think of ticks as a nuisance to your pets, but they can also harm humans as well. 

A variety of tick species can be found in many areas throughout the United States, making the risk for contracting a tick-borne disease high. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there were 59,349 cases of Lyme disease, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, anaplasmosis, and other tick-borne illnesses in 2017 alone.

As mosquito and tick control professionals, it is important to us that we educate our customers on the risks these pests pose. In this Tick-Borne Illness spotlight, we will be telling you all about Lyme disease, one of the most common tick-borne illnesses in the United States. Read on for some commonly-asked questions about Lyme disease and tips for preventing ticks around your home:

Where does Lyme disease most often occur?

Cases of Lyme disease have been reported in areas all throughout the United States but are most common in states in the northeast and some states in the midwest. For example, the state of Pennsylvania had 7,920 confirmed cases of Lyme disease occur in 2018, with New Jersey and Connecticut having close to the same amount. 

What is Lyme disease?

Lyme disease is the most often reported tick-borne disease in the United States. Although it is very common, Lyme disease can have some very serious symptoms. Symptoms of this tick-borne illness can include fever, rash, muscle aches, and a number of other things. Some of the more serious signs of Lyme disease are facial palsy (loss of muscle tone on your face), inflammation of the brain, and an irregular heartbeat. 

How is Lyme disease transmitted?

As mentioned before, people contract Lyme disease after being bitten by an infected tick. The black-legged tick, or deer tick, is responsible for transmitting Lyme disease in the northeastern, Mid-Atlantic, and north-central regions of the United States. The western black-legged tick, on the other hand, transmits the illness along the Pacific Coast. 

Ticks can attach to any part of a human or animal’s body, which is why checking for ticks after spending time outdoors is a vital part of DIY tick control. After being bitten by an infected tick, it usually takes about 36 to 48 hours for the host to contract Lyme disease.  

What precautions can I take to help prevent ticks around my home?

Proper tick control is crucial to reducing your risk of contracting a tick-borne illness. Here are some helpful tips for at-home tick control:

  • Mow your lawn frequently
  • Clear tall grass and bushes away from your house
  • Keep playground equipment away from the edges of your yard
  • Check your pets for ticks after they come inside your home
  • Hire a local tick control company

Lyme disease is one of many tick-borne illnesses in the United States, with thousands of cases occurring every year. Hiring tick control professionals is the most effective way to reduce your and your family’s risk of being bitten by infected ticks. 


We make it our mission to ensure you can enjoy your outdoor space without worrying about ticks. To find your local tick control company, click here.

Franchise Owner Gives Back

We are excited to share that Franchising.com recently picked up our story on Anthony Duncan and how he is using his position as a franchise owner to give back to his community. 

While we are proud to offer the best mosquito and tick control services at Mosquito Authority, we also take pride in seeing how our franchise owners contribute to and care about their communities. In addition to providing their customers with excellent service, our franchisees often think of unique ways to help those around them. 

2020 was a year when helping others and giving back played a large role in many of our lives. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, small businesses that managed to survive the economic downturn had the opportunity to give back to their customers and communities in a variety of ways. Small businesses can have a big impact when they go the extra mile for customers, and that is exactly what was needed during this past year.

Now, as we begin 2021 facing some of the same struggles, small business owners continue to prove an asset to their communities. Anthony Duncan, one of our long-time Mosquito Authority franchisees, is one of those small business owners doing what he can to contribute to his community.

After looking at his business plan for 2021, Anthony decided to do something for all of the healthcare workers who have been on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic since its beginning in 2020. Anthony will seek to provide 100 free treatments per month to front-line COVID-19 medical workers as a way to help those who are seeing the worst of the pandemic.

This initiative is even more impactful considering the need to stay home and social distance during this time. “I want to contribute in any way possible,” Anthony says. “With mosquito control, we’re helping people enjoy their outdoor living spaces at a time when many are mainly staying home because of Covid restrictions or for their own safety.”

 
We are so proud to have Anthony and his team as part of our franchise community and love hearing how much our franchise owners truly care about their communities. To read the whole story of what Anthony is doing to help those in his community, read the full article on Franchising.com.

Species Spotlight: Rocky Mountain Wood Tick

In addition to expert mosquito control services, we also offer tick control services at Mosquito Authority. Ticks are not only bothersome pests that invade your yard, but they are also vectors for a variety of dangerous and sometimes deadly diseases. 

We believe it is essential to educate our customers on ticks, from where they are most commonly found to what diseases they carry. In our last Species Spotlight, we told you some key facts about the Gulf Coast tick, including what their lifecycles look like and how best to avoid them.

In this Species Spotlight, we are highlighting the Rocky Mountain Wood tick (Dermacentor andersoni). Read on for information on this type of tick:

Where do they live?

Rocky Mountain wood ticks are typically found, as the name suggests, in the Rocky Mountain states of the United States (i.e. Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, etc.). These ticks can also be found in some parts of Southwestern Canada. According to the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA), they prefer to inhabit scrublands, lightly-wooded areas, and grasslands.

What does their lifecycle look like?

Most ticks go through four stages of life: egg, larvae, nymph, and adult. However, these ticks act differently depending on which life stage they are in. For example, Rocky Mountain Wood ticks prefer to feed on large mammals as adults but typically feed on small rodents as nymphs and larvae. Members of this species usually live for about two to three years.

Are they dangerous to humans?

Rocky Mountain Wood ticks are responsible for spreading a few diseases to humans: Colorado tick fever virus (CTFV), Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF), and tularemia. Both nymphs and adults of this species can transmit tularemia, while they can transmit RMSF and CTFV while in all stages of life. Because of a certain neurotoxin in their saliva, ticks of this species can occasionally cause tick paralysis.   

Are they dangerous to animals?

Just like with humans, Rocky Mountain Wood ticks can transmit certain illnesses to animals. For example, animals can contract Rocky Mountain spotted fever or tularemia if they are bitten by a Rocky Mountain Wood tick. Animals bitten by these ticks can also experience tick paralysis, as with humans.     

When are they active?

Rocky Mountain Wood ticks, especially adult males and females, are typically active from January to November, but reduce their activity during the summer months. They are most active during the late spring and early summer months of the year. Nymphs, on the other hand, are most active from March through October, and larvae follow the same pattern. 

What do they look like?

According to the NEHA, adult female Rocky Mountain wood ticks resemble American Dog ticks. They are dark brown and cream-colored, while adult males have dark brown bodies with brown markings.

How do I protect myself and my pets from Rocky Mountain Wood ticks?

There are several ways to reduce your risk of being bitten by ticks. Here a few:

  • Check your pets for ticks after they come indoors
  • Remove leaf litter from your yard
  • Avoid grassy or wooded areas
  • Hire a local tick control company

Rocky Mountain Wood ticks are found in many states and can transmit several serious diseases. While it’s important to practice tick control at home, the most effective way to prevent tick bites is by hiring tick control professionals. At Mosquito Authority, we make it our mission to protect you and your family from ticks and the diseases they carry.
Find your local tick control company here.

4 Things Mosquitoes Love

Valentine’s Day is almost upon us, and we hope you are finding ways to spend time with your loved ones this year. With this in mind, we are highlighting some things that mosquitoes love. Read on to learn some of these insects’ favorite things (and how to avoid being one of them!):

Standing water

Standing water is at the top of the list for a big reason: this is where mosquitoes breed and lay their eggs. In fact, mosquitoes only need about ¼ inches of water to lay their eggs in. So, how do you avoid an army of mosquitoes in your backyard? Be sure to get rid of any standing water from items such as toys, tire swings, planters, trash can lids, kids’ pools, and more. If you have birdbaths in your yard, change out the water once a week.

Type O Blood

Have you ever heard someone complain that they are particularly attractive to mosquitoes? Well, it turns out they may be right. According to the results of a study conducted by the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH), mosquitoes are more attracted to people with Type O blood than any other type. The study also showed mosquitoes were attracted to Type A blood less than Type O, but more than other blood types. 

While there isn’t anything you can do about your blood type, there are extra precautions you can take, such as making sure to wear insect repellent, to avoid becoming a mosquito’s next meal.

Dark Clothing

Style matters– at least when it comes to avoiding mosquito bites. Mosquitoes rely on their smell and sight to find hosts, and dark colors stand out to them. So, people dressed in dark colors such as black, navy, or red tend to attract a lot of mosquitoes when they are outside. To make yourself a bit less attractive to these pests, try to wear light-colored clothing when you are active outdoors.

In addition to wearing light-colored clothing, wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants when you are outside for a long period of time can help reduce your chance of getting bitten by mosquitoes. The less exposed skin you have, the less room for mosquitoes to bite.

Sweat

It might sound unpleasant, but mosquitoes are very likely to bite someone if he or she is sweating. According to the NIH, mosquitoes are highly attracted to the scent of human sweat because it contains lactic acid. If you are working or playing outside, particularly on a hot day, make sure to apply insect repellent containing DEET, picaridin, or oil of lemon eucalyptus to prevent mosquito bites.

Now that you know a little bit about what mosquitoes love, you can better protect yourself and your family by practicing proper at-home mosquito control. By getting rid of standing water, consistently applying mosquito repellent, and avoiding dark clothing, you can reduce your chances of being bitten by mosquitoes.

While DIY mosquito control is good, the best way to prevent mosquito bites around your home and outdoor space is to hire a local mosquito control company. At Mosquito Authority, we guarantee you will have a mosquito-free home and you won’t be bothered by these pests in between treatments.


To find your local mosquito control company, click here.