There are a lot of different tools that exterminators can use to eliminate pests, but tick control tubes are among the most unusual. They look simple, and they only have two major components, but they rely on taking advantage of complex animal behaviors in order to eliminate ticks. In the long term, taking advantage of those behaviors makes them one of the most effective tools for tick control, so anyone who is facing an infestation can benefit from learning a little bit about how they work.
Every trap begins with a tube. In most cases, the tube is made from a biodegradable material to make sure that it can break down after it does its job. That ensures that the exterminator does not leave any garbage around that can cause damage to the local wildlife or to pets that are wandering around the yard. The tube itself only exists to hold a filling and protect it from the environment until local mice find it.
The filling forms the core of the tick control tubes, since it’s the tool that is used to eliminate the ticks. Most tubes are filled with cotton, but almost any substance will work as long as mice are attracted to it and think that it seems comfortable. The filling is treated with an insecticide that is harmless to mice and most other creatures, but is highly lethal to ticks. That allows the filling to serve as a delivery mechanism for the insecticide, as long as there are enough mice in the area to allow the tubes to function properly.
How They Kill Ticks
The tubes of treated cotton are deployed around a yard or other natural space that is infested with ticks. They need to be sued with care if they are going to get good results, since the timing, location, and quantity of tubes will all have an impact on how the project goes.
Mice will eventually find their way to the tick tubes, at which point they will discover the treated cotton. Mice love to line their burrows with warm, soft objects, so they will take the cotton out of the tube and bring it back to their dens. Once the mice have taken the cotton back to the lairs, the tube has done its job.
The cotton will expose every mouse in the den to the insecticide. The vast majority of ticks feed on mice before they ever latch on to a human, so this turns them into a living trap. When the ticks try to feed on one of the mice, they get exposed to the insecticide and die. This will wipe out many of the ticks before they can breed, so it’s a good way to keep a population under control for a long time.