Ticks in California
Ticks are one of the most concerning pests in California, as they can spread illnesses such as Lyme disease. In fact, according to the California Department of Public Health, Lyme disease is the most commonly reported tick-borne disease in the state in terms of human cases. Because of this, it is essential that CA residents take certain precautions, particularly while engaging in outdoor activities during warmer months.
List of Common Types of Ticks in California
There are more than 47 tick species in California. The four most common are:
When is Tick Season in California?
Ticks in California are generally most active during June and July. CA residents are most at risk for Lyme disease during these months.
Are Ticks “Bad” in California?
Due in part to California’s temperate climate, ticks are able to spread throughout the state. According to the California Department of Public Health, northwestern coastal counties are areas of highest risk for Lyme disease.
When spending time outdoors, we recommend following the steps below to help limit exposure to ticks and other vector pests:
- Wear long pants, shirts with long sleeves, and closed-toe shoes. This can help prevent ticks from latching onto the skin. Wearing light colored clothing can also make it easier to spot ticks.
- If you are walking or hiking in wooded areas, avoid vegetation and try to stick to the center of the trails.
- After spending time outdoors, especially near tall grass or in wooded areas, carefully inspect yourself, as well as family members and pets, for ticks.
- Finally, wear insect repellent that contains at least 20% DEET.
What to Do If You Are Bitten by a Tick in California
If you, a family member, or a pet is bitten by a tick, you’ll want to be careful and prompt in its removal. We recommend taking the following steps:
- Gently pull back any hair near or around the tick.
- Locate and grasp the head of the tick with fine-tipped tweezers and gently squeeze. Try to get as close to the skin as possible. Do not grab the tick’s body, as it may increase your chances of injecting the tick’s blood into the skin.
- Pull the tick outward in a straight motion until the head comes out of the skin. Do not twist or wiggle the tick, as it could possibly tear the head, leaving the body embedded in the skin.
- After the tick is removed, clean the bite area and your hands using soap and water. Flush the tick down the toilet or wrap it tightly in tissue before disposing of it in a closed receptacle.
- If you have a fever or a rash develops around the bite mark within several weeks of the tick being removed, consult a doctor.
Find a Tick Exterminator in California Today
Ticks in California can represent a serious health risk for humans and pets. If you encounter a tick in or around your home, we recommend contacting a licensed pest control professional. Enter your zip code in the search bar below to see a list of verified and licensed local professionals.