We are no stranger to ticks here in Texas. We’ve been very lucky the past couple of years that the tick population has been way down, thanks to the terrible drought the state is experiencing. (The drop in the tick numbers may be the only benefit of the drought that I can see.)
In regular years, though, we’ve really had to struggle with ticks, taking extra care to check the dogs and ourselves after a walk in the woods. Because we live in the country and we’re surrounded by a nature preserve, the ticks have a great environment for thriving and multiplying.
This graphic from PetCareRx has some very interesting maps of the US, and reveals a fact that we didn’t realize: every one of the lower 48 US states has at least one kind of tick. That made us wonder a little more about ticks so we scratched around and discovered some interesting facts about these little pesky critters:
- Many fossilized ticks have been discovered. It’s believed ticks developed in the Cretaceous period 65 to 146 million years ago.
- Ticks are arachnids and have eight legs.
- Ticks detect people and animals by our body heat, odors, breath, moisture, and vibration.
- Ticks can’t jump but wait for hosts by questing–holding onto grass or brush with just some legs while the other legs hang out and wait to take hold.
Have a look at the maps below to see which types of ticks are found in your area: