tick on blade of grass

Where Do Ticks Come From and Where Do They Live?

Ticks are tiny, blood-sucking arachnids that grow and survive by feeding on blood from human and animal hosts. Depending on the tick species, they may have a preference for certain types of hosts, like dogs or white-tailed deer. Through their bites, some tick species can even spread dangerous diseases, like Lyme disease.

You can avoid tick bites by learning about where they live and avoiding the places they tend to inhabit. Let’s jump right in!

Where Ticks Live In the United States

You can find ticks in just about every state in the continental U.S., although certain varieties are more widely distributed than others. All of the ticks listed below can transmit dangerous diseases to their hosts, so it’s important to know where you or your pet are most likely to encounter them.

  • American dog tick: distributed throughout the U.S. east of the Rocky Mountains. Also in limited locations on the Pacific coast.
  • Blacklegged tick, aka deer tick: northeastern, mid-Atlantic, southeastern, and northcentral U.S.
  • Brown dog tick: throughout the U.S.
  • Gulf Coast tick: states along Atlantic coast (from about Virginia southward) and Gulf of Mexico
  • Lone star tick: eastern and southeastern U.S.
  • Rocky Mountain wood tick: Rocky Mountain States
  • Western blacklegged tick: states along Pacific coast

4 Places Where You’re Most Likely to Pick Up Ticks

Have you ever wondered where ticks come from and where people and animals pick them up? Although there are some behavioral variations between different types of ticks, they tend to inhabit the same kinds of locations.

  • Grassy areas with low vegetation. Ticks crawl up onto grass, bushes, and shrubs where small and large mammals will pass by. As a person or animal brushes against the vegetation, a tick will “hitch a ride” without their host even realizing it.
  • Vegetation located in transitional areas. For instance, this might be where a forest transitions into a meadow, field, or lawn or where a hiking trail meets tall grass. These tend to be “high traffic” areas where animals (aka. tick hosts) pass through to get cover.
  • Animal nests and dens. Even though most people aren’t likely to go poking around the den or nesting area of a raccoon, opossum, or skunk, it’s important to note that this is where these animals pick up ticks that they can then introduce to your property when visiting.
  • Shaded places. This is particularly true for the lone star tick, which won’t survive under extensive sun exposure.

While many ticks survive primarily outdoors, it’s also possible to get bitten indoors. The brown dog tick is one species with a knack for surviving indoors, especially in dog kennels where it has easy access to blood meals from unfortunate pups.

At Horizon Pest Control, our team of tick removal experts uses the latest technology to safely and effectively remove pests from your property. Contact us today at (888) 617-6133 for a free estimate for New Jersey tick removal services.