Species Spotlight: Lone Star Tick

With approximately 90 species of ticks inhabiting the United States, it is important to know what to look out for and how to prevent these pests. As a local tick control company, we at Mosquito Authority take tick control seriously not only because these pests are a nuisance, but also because they pose potential health risks. No two tick species are exactly the same, however, so it is crucial that we understand the differences between them.

Last week we told you all about the blacklegged, or deer, tick: where they live, what they look like, who they prey on, and more. In this week’s Species Spotlight, you will be learning about a different type of tick: the Amblyomma americanum, otherwise known as the lone star tick. Read on to know exactly what to look for when it comes to the lone star tick:                               

Where do they live?

The lone star tick can be found in the eastern half of the United States, all the way from Louisiana to Maine. However, they are particularly common in the southeastern states of the country. These ticks are often found in dense woodlands.

How long do they live?

The life cycle of the lone star tick is very similar to that of the deer tick, as it goes through the typical four stages of life: egg, six-legged larva, eight-legged nymph, and adult. Lone star ticks need to have three different hosts throughout their lives, as they need a new blood meal to move on from each life stage. 

Are they dangerous to humans?

The short answer is yes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, lone star ticks are highly aggressive towards humans. Humans are not only in danger of being bitten by these ticks, but also for contracting diseases from them. The lone star tick is responsible for transmitting illnesses such as ehrlichiosis, tularemia, Heartland virus disease, Bourbon virus disease, Southern tick-associated rash illness (STARI), and Rocky Mountain spotted fever. These ticks are most likely to bite humans as nymphs or adult females.

Are they dangerous to animals?

Lone star ticks can get their blood meals from both humans and animals. Because of this, animals are also at risk for contracting diseases from these ticks. Lone star ticks can transmit diseases like Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, and tularemia to animals.

When are they active?

According to the CDC, the greatest risk for getting bitten by an adult lone star tick exists from the early spring through late fall. Nymphs are usually active starting in May while larvae begin searching for small animals to feed on in July.

What do they look like?

Lone star ticks have a unique appearance. Adult females of this species have a white dot, commonly referred to as a “lone star,” on their backs. Male lone star ticks are distinguished by having white spots or stripes around the edge of their bodies.

How do I protect myself from lone star ticks?

You can help protect yourself and your family from lone star ticks with some of these common tick control techniques:

  • Mow your lawn frequently
  • Construct fences to discourage wildlife from entering your yard
  • Remove old furniture and trash from your yard
  • Hire a local tick control company 

Now that you know a little bit about lone star ticks, you can better protect your home and family from these pests. Our mission at Mosquito Authority is to ensure your home is tick-free so you can have peace of mind in your outdoor space.


To find your local tick control company, click here.

5 Things Every Mom Should Know About Mosquitoes

At Mosquito Authority, educating our customers on the potential health risks mosquitoes pose and how they can lower those risks is a big part of how we practice mosquito control. For instance, did you know kids are more susceptible to mosquito bites than anyone else? Knowing facts like this can help you make a plan for handling mosquito season.

We know the health and wellbeing of your family is your top priority, so we make it our’s, too.

To help you prepare your family for mosquito season, we put together some tips on how to stay happy and healthy while enjoying the outdoors. Here are five things we believe every mom should know about mosquitoes:

Fall Activities to Celebrate the Season

Fall has finally arrived, and with it, the cool weather, changing leaves, and pumpkin spiced lattes. COVID-19 has kept most of us cooped up inside for the majority of 2020, but the one thing it can’t do is keep us from enjoying autumn and the festivities that come with it. 

There are plenty of ways to enjoy the season, whether you are someone who enjoys the outdoors or someone who would rather stay in for a cozy night by the fireplace. Here are some fun, fall activities you can do with the whole family:

Go pumpkin-picking

It wouldn’t be autumn without a day spent in a pumpkin patch. Pumpkin-picking is a classic way to celebrate the season while also getting to enjoy the outdoors with the whole family. Many pumpkin farms even offer extra activities to take part in, such as hay rides and food markets.

Spruce up your fall garden 

Fall is a great time to add some color to your garden. Whether you are a gardening expert or just starting out, there are plenty of beautiful flowers to plant when autumn comes around. Violas, black-eyed Susans, and chrysanthemums are all great options for fall flower planting!

Have a backyard bonfire

Bonfires are a fun way to make the most of a chilly night outdoors. Who doesn’t love s’mores and spooky stories? If you’re worried about being bitten up by mosquitoes, give us a call and we will make sure your backyard is mosquito-free and bonfire-ready!

Plan a family movie night

Sometimes these chilly October nights can have you wanting a night in, so settle in for a family movie night! There are plenty of movies to get you in the festive spirit, so choose one or two (or three) and enjoy a cozy night in.

Visit a corn maze

Corn mazes are fun no matter what your age. If staying inside just doesn’t seem like fun this weekend, enjoying a corn maze is a fun alternative. It’s okay if you get lost in there– that’s half the fun! 

Decorate your house for fall

One of the best ways you can get in the autumn spirit is by putting up some fall decorations. You can even take it to the next level by making your own decorations; homemade wreaths and painted pumpkins are great DIY crafts that everyone can help make!  

Try out some new fall recipes

Autumn brings with it some of the best foods, from pumpkin bread to apple pie. If you are in the baking mood or want to improve your skills in the kitchen, there are plenty of delicious, fall-themed recipes ranging from easy to expert.

Go on a hike

It’s hard to feel motivated to stay active during the colder months of the year, so consider taking your family on a hike. Hiking is not only great exercise, but also a way to enjoy the outdoors and fall foliage with the whole family. 

These are just a few of the many ways to enjoy fall. If you are planning on spending a lot of time outdoors this season, schedule a Mosquito Authority treatment to make sure your backyard is mosquito and tick-free.

Family Health and Fitness Day

Saturday, September 26th is Family Health and Fitness Day, so here are some ways to make the most of it.

Family Health and Fitness Day is intended to promote both physical health and fitness among families in the United States. Observed on the last Saturday of September, Family Health and Fitness Day encourages families and their loved ones to implement healthy habits and activities in their daily lives. This day was established by the Health and Information Resource Center in 1996 in order to promote a healthy family lifestyle for Americans.

At Mosquito Authority, we love to promote the health and wellbeing of our customers, so we came up with some suggestions for how you can make the most of Family Health and Fitness Day.

1. Go on a hike

Exercise is an important part of the day, so why not enjoy it? Hiking not only benefits your health but it also gives you the opportunity to get some fresh air and appreciate the outdoors. Just be sure to wear mosquito repellent and check for ticks after hiking in the woods.

2.  Play a sport as a family

Because of COVID-19 your kids might not be able to enjoy their favorite sports like they used to. However, that doesn’t mean playing sports is out of the question. Organize a family game, whether it is football, basketball, soccer, etc., and get the whole family outside for some fun (and friendly) competition.    

3. Go for a family bike ride

Biking is a tried-and-true family activity. Whether you are biking on a trail or just going for a ride through the neighborhood, this is a great way to keep your family active. Not only is it good for fitness, but exercising outside provides a nice break from those indoor workouts.

3. Come up with a weekly meal plan

Planning your meals at the beginning of the week saves time and also allows you to make intentional food choices. By taking the time each week to meal-plan, you can form healthy eating habits for your family and take the stress out of last-minute dinner plans!

4. Know your family health history

Educating yourself on family health history is crucial. By being aware of your family medical history, you can reduce your risk of developing health problems in the future. 

5. Go for daily walks

Sometimes a simple walk is the best way to exercise as a family. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that adults 18-64 years old should walk for at least 150 minutes every week (that’s roughly 22 minutes per day). 

Family Health and Fitness Day is a great time to spend time with your family and recognize the importance of physical health. To make sure your backyard is a safe space to spend some time getting active, schedule a mosquito treatment with us today.

Mosquito Authority’s tips on how to have a bug-free barbeque

Summer might be coming to an end, but barbeque season is still going strong! In fact, with the weather cooling down in September, this might just be the best time to fire up the grill and enjoy your backyard. 

There is just one problem: how do you stop mosquitoes from ruining your outdoor dinner plans? That’s where Mosquito Authority comes in. We want you to enjoy your backyard to the fullest, so here are some Mosquito Authority-approved tips for having a bug-free barbeque this season:

1.  Set out some citronella candles

While citronella is not 100% effective in staving off mosquitoes, it can still help. Try setting out some citronella candles or torches around your backyard area if you are planning on hosting a gathering.

 2. Wear light-colored clothing

It might sound odd, but people wearing dark clothing are actually at a higher risk for mosquito bites than those wearing lighter clothes. Avoid being a target for mosquitoes in search of a meal by wearing light-colored clothing during an outdoor event. 

3. Use a fan

Another strategy for keeping mosquitoes from ruining your backyard barbeque is to put one or two fans in your outdoor space. There are two reasons why fans can help deter mosquitoes, one of them being that mosquitoes are weak fliers, so a strong fan can keep them from getting to you. The other reason is that mosquitoes are enticed by the lactic acid from human sweat, so by cooling you down, fans also make you less attractive to these pests. 

4. Remove any standing water from your yard

Mosquitoes love standing water, so make sure you don’t have any puddles or places where water could build up in your yard. If you have any birdbaths, be sure to change out the water frequently in order to avoid mosquitoes on the day or night of your barbeque.

5. Cover your trash cans and get rid of any trash as soon as possible

Leftover food and beverages in trash cans attract all sorts of bugs, so it’s important to keep your outdoor trash cans covered. In addition, using a lid avoids any water from getting in your trash can, which can help deter mosquitoes.

6.  Schedule your BBQ for early afternoon

We’ve all had a nice night or two ruined by the presence of mosquitoes. Since these pests are most active during dusk, we recommend scheduling your barbeque early in the afternoon to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.

7. Eat outside, but serve the food inside

Try serving your meal inside in order to keep the majority of the food away from hungry pests. This way, you and your guests can still enjoy eating outdoors without constantly worrying if bugs have gotten into the food.

8. Call Mosquito Authority

At Mosquito Authority, our primary focus is ensuring you and your family’s safety and helping you enjoy your outdoor space without the presence of mosquitoes. To ensure that your next barbeque or outdoor event is mosquito-free, schedule a treatment with us today.