Fowl Tick Facts & Information

Protect your home or business from fowl ticks by learning techniques for identification and control.

Argas persicus
1/4 inch
Wrinkled skin
Light to dark red-brown

Treatment

How do I get rid of fowl ticks?

What Orkin Does

Your local Orkin technician is trained to help manage fowl ticks and similar pests. Since every building or home is different, your Orkin technician will design a unique tick treatment program for your situation.

Orkin can provide the right solution to keep fowl ticks in their place…out of your home, or business.

Frequently Asked Questions

Behavior, Diet & Habits

Understanding Fowl Ticks

Appearance

  • Size: Adults are about 1/4 inch long.

  • Characteristics: Nymphal and adult fowl tick mouthparts are not visible when viewed from above since they are hidden by the front margin of the tick’s body.

  • Color: Fowl ticks range in color from light to dark red-brown, and their skin is wrinkled.

Diet

Although fowl ticks are usually associated with poultry production, roaming ticks can also invade and infest homes and attempt to feed on people and pets. Adult and nymph fowl ticks most actively seek to feed at night and feed for only about 15-30 minutes before leaving their host and returning to their harborage site.

Geographic Range

These pests are distributed worldwide. Within the United States, the modernization of poultry production has made fowl ticks somewhat spotty in their distribution. However, the Southern and Southwestern states are more likely to have populations.

Life Cycle

Fowl ticks, also referred to as blue bugs or chicken ticks, are in the group known as soft ticks. They undergo four developmental stages, which includes:

  1. Eggs: Adult females lay from 25 to upwards of 500 eggs after feeding on a host. Eggs will hatch 10-30 days after being laid, depending on temperature and humidity within their habitat. Fowl tick eggs are deposited inside small nooks and crannies throughout poultry houses.

  2. Larvae: Once hatched, the larvae begin to seek out birds for a blood meal. Larvae may stay attached for up to several days, not leaving the host until they are fully engorged with blood.

  3. Nymphal: Larvae will then drop off the host, molt into the nymphal stage, and after about one week, take another blood meal.

  4. Adults: After completing the nymphal stage, the fowl tick matures into the adult stage. Adults do not remain on the host; after each feeding, they return to the harborage site in cracks and crevices.

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