The Difference Between Ticks and Bed Bugs

Tick: Ticks have 8 legs.
top view of a tick
Bed Bug: Bed bugs have 6 legs.
image of a bed bug

Arachnid vs Insect

Differences
One of the main differences between ticks and bed bugs is that ticks are arachnids and not insects. Ticks have eight legs, as opposed to the six that bed bugs have.

Similarities
Since newly hatched ticks are relatively flat and only have six legs until feeding for the first time, tick nymphs and adult bed bugs can be mistaken for each other.

Difference in Hosts & Habitats

Another difference between ticks and bed bugs is their host preferences. While ticks feed on animals in addition to humans, bed bugs typically stick to human hosts.

Habitat
Additionally, ticks thrive in outdoor environments, while bed bugs are mainly found indoors.

Health Risks
Most importantly, while bed bug bites are irritating, they do not spread disease. Tick bites, however, can transmit Lyme disease, babesiosis, and tularemia.

Prevention & Control

  • Entry: Both ticks and bed bugs frequently infest homes. Bed bugs enter via luggage or clothing and then establish colonies in mattresses, furniture, and draperies.
  • Bed Bugs: Bed bug populations quickly get out of hand, which makes professional pest control the only option to guarantee proper removal.
  • Ticks: Ticks regularly attach to the skin of people and pets, which makes avoiding tall grasses and other areas where ticks breed essential to control and prevention.

How to get tick control

How to get bed bug control

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