Focus on IPM for fleas and ticks


July 29, 2019

Dr. Jamel Sandidge, BCE Research Entomologist, Rockwell Laboratories

Dr. Jamel Sandidge, BCE, Research Entomologist, Rockwell Laboratories

Controlling disease vectors such as fleas and ticks can present unique challenges that require focused integrated pest management (IPM) efforts. Treatments typically involve the broad-scale application of insecticides and acaricides. But a never-ending parade of rodents, birds, deer and other wildlife that serve as hosts can reintroduce populations.

Ticks in particular, and the diseases they carry, have hit an all-time high in recent years, bringing a heightened awareness of the need for effective pest management along with a host of additional tools and management methods. Flea IPM and tick IPM are very similar, however, and should include:

  1. Vegetation reduction and management.
  2. Host reduction and management.
  3. Prevention and education.
  4. Pesticide/biopesticide/IGR applications as warranted.

Ticks have a multi-year and multi-host development cycle. When populations recur frequently, consider incorporating pesticide- or IGR-treated rodent boxes and nesting materials, entomopathogenic fungus, or other biocontrol methods.

Botanical pesticide granules and liquid sprays can be used to penetrate leaf litter and ground cover before nymphal ticks emerge in the spring, and can provide a repellent barrier between wooded and landscaped areas for host-seeking ticks during active periods. Active monitoring, early intervention, and host management will greatly improve your success.

Leave A Comment

Comments are closed.