Chiggers pose the greatest threat during the early summer months when the grass produces dense overgrowth. The insect pierces the skin's pore or hair follicle with its sharp mouth. It injects its chemical laced saliva into the wound which liquefies the cells, so the insect can suck them up. The bite causes a red welt to form four to six hours after the initial bite. The location usually itches excessively. Chiggers will feed on humans, snakes, mammals and birds. They often present the greatest danger to women and children because of their softer skin, according to the Missouri Department of Conservation.
Things You'll Need
- Pesticide with diazinon, chlorpyrifos or carbaryl
Mow the lawn close. Chiggers require the protection of overgrowth to survive.
Clear away brush that surrounds the lawn. Removing the brush will help control the chiggers.
Spray the lawn using a pesticide that contains diazinon, chlorpyrifos or carbaryl. Follow the directions on the pesticide's label for application instructions. Re-treat the area in two to three weeks to effectively kill the chiggers.
Tips & Warnings
- Chiggers are the most active during the afternoon.
- The chigger prefers a ground temperature of 77 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit. They will perish if the temperature drops below 42 F.
- Bathe immediately after being in chigger infested grass. Use soap and warm water.
- Wash clothing in warm water with laundry soap to kill the insects or they will continue to reside in the clothing.
- Severe allergic reactions can occur from a chigger bite. Seek medical advice for a severe reaction.
- Keep pets and children off pesticide treated lawns until dry.
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