Are There Chiggers In Florida?

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If you’re traveling to Florida then you’ll want to be aware of the local wildlife so that you can prepare.

We all know about gators and snakes but what about pesky bugs that aren’t so easy to spot?

Are there chiggers in Florida?

Let’s find out.

What Are Chiggers?

Chiggers are actually a type of mite larvae and are very closely related to ticks.

They’re very small critters; microscopic even and in order to grow into adults, these bugs must have a host.

Chiggers in every area of the USA
Chiggers explained

This classifies them as a parasite. 

Chiggers are typically found in areas where there is a lot of grass and they prefer moist spots.

Generally – Chiggers will use things like birds, amphibians, or small animals as their hosts but it’s not uncommon for them to attach to people.

Of course, compared to other hosts, humans aren’t quite as good so the chigger won’t live as long. 

That doesn’t mean you’d want one on you though. Read on to find out more about chiggers in Florida.

Are There Chiggers In Florida?

The thing with chiggers is that they’re so common!

They’re actually found in pretty much every area of the USA.

However, they are extremely common in places like Florida as well as most of the other states in the south east part of the country.

In some parts of the world, chiggers can transmit diseases such as scrub typhus.

However, if you find them in Florida, this will not be the case and they’ve never been shown to spread any disease here. 

Do Chiggers Bite?

Chiggers do bite and this can be very irritating.

When you’re bitten, you’ll notice red welts on the skin which can, in some cases, turn into a blister. 

Super itchy bite from chiggers
Super itchy bite

One of the things that makes chigger bites so annoying is that they’re super itchy.

Within just a couple of hours of being bitten, you’ll be scratching away at your skin trying to sate the itch.

That said, the initial bite will probably go unnoticed.

When Chiggers Bites – They attach to your skin. They can also attach to hair follicles and they do this by using their mouthparts to pierce the skin.

The problem is that you might not even notice the chigger for some time; at least until the bite starts to itch. 

While they’re attached to you, they’ll inject a special liquid that is designed to dissolve tissue.

When this happens, they’ll feed off the substance but since human immune systems kick into gear after the initial bite, the chigger won’t get a ton of nutrition like it would if it is attached to another type of animal.

But even after the chigger fails or dies, you’ll still be left with those itchy red marks.

Many people notice the rash ends around the waistband of their underwear which is a key giveaway that chiggers are to blame.

Other areas that these little critters like to latch on are around the ankles, armpits, and knees as the skin tends to be thinner here.

Treating A Chigger Bite

If you’re unfortunate enough to get bitten by a chigger, you’re not alone.

These bites are very common but it’s important to take the right course of action. 

The most important thing to do is to get into the shower and have a good wash with soap as this will remove any remaining chiggers that are attached to your skin. 

Tips on Treating chigger bite
Treating chigger bite

After this, it’s a case of waiting it out as the bites will need time to heal.

Of course, you can use creams to stop the itching and anti-allergy treatments are also very effective. 

One of the main problems is that people sustain infections from scratching and bacteria can get into the open wound.

Therefore, it’s really important to try not to scratch and some of the above treatments can help with this. 

How to Avoid Chiggers

If you’re going to be spending some time in Florida then you’ll want to make sure that you stay as far away from chiggers as possible.

The bad news is that controlling them isn’t easy but you can try to make your property as uninhabitable for them as you can to reduce their numbers. 

Making sure that you keep your lawn mowed and any weeds under control is one of the best ways to deter them as they love long grass. 

Avoiding chiggers in Florida
Avoiding chiggers tips

When arriving at a property, or checking an existing one, you can use a piece of black card and place this on the ground.

If there are any chiggers about, they’ll be attracted to the cardboard and will gather on it.

Look for little dots that are either pinkish or yellow in color and appear to be moving around; remember, they’re microscopic!

If there is a chigger presence then using pesticides is one of the best ways to deal with a serious infestation.

Something like diatomaceous earth is an organic solution that’s known to work very well.

You’ll also want to make sure that other animals can’t get into the yard as they could be hosting chiggers.

Keep In Mind – Things like squirrels, chipmunks and various other mammals are the main culprits so fencing off the garden and taking away anything that might attract animals should help to control problems.

In some very unfortunate cases, it’s possible for chiggers to get into the structure of the home or any outbuildings.

Chiggers do bite danger
Chiggers do bite

In these situations, it’s usually best to call for help from a local pest control team. 

Final Thoughts

Chiggers are a real pest so if you’re heading to Florida then you may be wondering whether you’ll be plagued by them.

Sadly, chiggers are rife in this state but there are things you can do to keep them at bay and stop yourself from becoming their next host.

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