Chiggers are pesky, small, red mites. While their bites aren’t painful, they are notorious for their intense itching. Chiggers can be found anywhere outside during the warm months. Adults hibernate during the winter to survive the cold, much like other insects that thrive in warm weather. They love vegetation-shaded soil, which makes it a prime suspect to be lurking in your yard, garden, or hiking areas. But, how can you deal with chiggers? What preventative measures can you take to combat them this summer?
How can you prevent chigger bites?
Bug spray is a good option to prevent unwanted pests during the spring and summer time, including chiggers. Your clothing also can make a big difference when it comes to getting bit by a chigger. While it might not be the first choice of outfit during summer, consider wearing long sleeves and pants. Tuck your pants into your socks or shoes to limit exposure to your skin.
When you’re out and about, avoid areas with heavy brush, because that’s where you’re likely to run into a chigger nest. Try to stay out of tall grass as well if possible. If you’re on a trail, stay in the middle of the trail to avoid contact with leaves, branches, or high standing grass. Make sure to shower immediately when you get home and wash all your clothing in hot water to kill any hitchhikers.
In your own yard, consider maintaining the grass to prevent chiggers, fleas, and ticks, especially if you have animals that can attract their presence. Make sure to mow regularly, especially if your property is surrounded by a heavily wooded area. Keep your garden beds weeded. There are pesticides you can use if you need to that can kill chiggers. Just be mindful of the directions and keep small children and pets out of the treated area.