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Image depicting how to get rid of ticks


Ticks (Family Ixodidae) are a serious concern because they are known to transmit diseases to humans and animals. In Canada the most common ticks are the deer tick (or black-legged tick), American dog tick, brown dog tick and Rocky Mountain wood tick. The deer tick (Ixodes scapularis) is of concern because it can spread Lyme disease.

Ticks are not insects, but arthropods. They belong to the same class as spiders. Ticks are parasites and need a host to survive. They need to consume blood during all stages of their life cycle. Common hosts are deer, livestock, dogs, cats and humans, but ticks will feed on any blood source available to them. When ticks feed on blood, their body expands, making them appear much larger. A female deer tick can grow to up to 10mm when engorged with blood.

Ticks range in size from a sesame seed to a pea, with reddish brown, brown, black, grey or white colouring. Female deer ticks are 3-5 mm in length with reddish-brown colouring. Male deer ticks are smaller than female and are brown.  

The best way get rid of ticks is to prevent them. Read our article to get tips to help prevent and minimize ticks. If you are concerned about ticks, consider a tick control service applied by a professional tick control expert.