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Krysta writes,

What is the best product for a tick infestation?

I live in Hawaii and due to the year round warmth, ticks are EVERYWHERE. I absolutely loathe ticks, but somehow my home has become their home too. I have a dog who is on Biospot Flea and Tick treatment, but it doesn't seem to work so we're switching to Frontline or Advantix. Yesterday, I found seven ticks in my home, two of which were already engorged, so they've been feeding. I believe they're brown dog ticks from the pictures I've found. The two engorged ones were on wall and floor, and the others have been on blankets, baseboards, floor, and in the shower. My husband sprayed the yard with Ortho Max about a 3 weeks ago and they're already back. I believe it's the dog bringing them in from the yard and my husband on his uniform since he's in the Army and is always going to the ranges and laying down in the grass and dirt. From what I've read, Demon WP seems to be the hardest hitting for ticks and is safe for indoor and outdoor use, as well as pet friendly when dry. I'm also looking at Demand CS and Talstar P (Talstar One), and Permetherin SFR 36.8%. Talstar P actually had a 5 star review for killing off brown dog ticks. What is the best product for my situation? I would like to only treat outdoors if possible, but indoors may be necessary too. I want to completely disintegrate these ticks. Any other bug I can handle, but not ticks. We also have centipedes in Hawaii (HUGE ones), and although there haven't been any in my home, I'd like to use something that works for them too, just in case. Thank you so much.


Demon WP or Demand CS would be great choices for tick control. A wettable powder (Demon WP) or a microencapsulated formulation (Demand CS) might offer the best chance of particles of the active ingredient clinging to the ticks as they move across the surface. Demand CS may be the best choice for you because it does not leave a visible residue like the Demon WP can. Ideally, the indoor application would be made into every possible crevice in the room where the female ticks could go, but this could be a daunting effort. Try to picture where the ticks will wander for a place to hide, such as behind floor molding would be an obvious one. They might get up under stuffed furniture, behind pictures on the walls, inside dressers and other items in your home. All of these areas should be treated. We recommend using an IGR such as Archer IGR in combination with the insecticide that you choose. IGRs (insect growth regulators) will interrupt the growth cycle of juvenile ticks which will stop them from being able to mate and lay eggs. We also recommend using an insecticide dust such as Pyganic dust. Dusts have a much longer residual than liquids and they can be applied inside of wall voids where ticks may hide.

For outdoor areas, you use the combination of insecticide and IGR.Tie a white cloth to a stick or broom handle and  drag the cloth around over the lawn and grassy areas, and examine the cloth for ticks, which will latch onto the material as it passes by. Areas where ticks are found can be can be treated. You should also treat any tall growth or shrubs.

Answer last updated on: 11/22/2010

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