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How to Stay Tick Free This Spring

by Melissa Bachman   |  April 24th, 2012 13

Although turkey hunting may be one of my favorite hunts of the year, there is always a little bad with the good, and in this case it’s ticks! Not only do they completely invade my space, they can also be extremely dangerous; lyme disease is becoming an all too familiar problem among outdoor enthusiasts everywhere.

I speak from first-hand experience when I say this season the ticks are out in full force. Just after completing a hunt in Kansas, the ticks seemed to be out of control, but I was ready for them.

Each morning before heading out, I spray down my hunting clothes with a spray that has permethrin such as Sawyer’s Clothing Insect Repellant or Repel Clothing & Gear Insect Repellant. I completely spray my clothing down first, making sure to thoroughly spray my pants waistbands and socks.

Then, I take Repel 100, which is 100-percent DEET, and spray down any exposed skin and around my ankles underneath my socks. This helps keep ticks, mosquitoes and chiggers off your skin so you can hunt in comfort and stay safe. This is the most concentrated insect repellent you can buy and works great if you plan to be outdoors for a long period of time. Just remember: If you get it on your hands, make sure to wash them before touching your mouth or eating.

Regardless if you just hate the idea of ticks burrowing into your skin or you want to keep safe from lyme disease, these simple tips can be the best preventative medicine to keep you tick free this spring.

How many of you have had serious run-ins with ticks this year?

  • Keven

    The ticks are heavy in north Texas, that's for sure. Gotta get the yard treated and the dogs dipped.

  • Rob Elderly

    Fascinating information! That is just such great news that you were ready for that darned tick problem!

    I have just a few questions…

    1) Do you spray the clothes before or after putting them on?

    2) How far away do you hold the spray can to the clothes?

    3) Can you spray someone else's clothes?

    4) What do you do if the can is empty?

    Thanks for all the information!

  • Issy

    Started using B Complex about three months ago for my dog. The stuff is called Flea Treats. Suppose to work on ticks as well. So far my dog has been flea and tick free. I bring this up only to say I have heard of people using B Complex and garlic as a natural repellent. Does anyone have experience with this against for mosquitoes and ticks while hunting?

  • tp

    how do you get this spray, can you get it at walmart ?

  • Al Quackenbush

    I use Permethrin and I pick it up at Bass Pro. You need to spray it liberally on your clothes and let it completely dry before touching or putting the clothes on. Don't spray it on while you are wearing it and certainly don't get it on your skin. We get ticks year round out here in So Cal and I hate em!

    I have tried the B Complex thing and couldn't get it to work. Have a bottle sitting at home. I take it, but seem to still get bit by skeeters. Might need to double up on it!

  • Fred

    caution with using the 100% deet, it is great stuff, BUT has now there are cautions out about it.

  • TheCaptain

    Good tips. Here is CA the ticks are THICK this year!

    • Xman97

      I thought in CA they are thick year round, every year? You have a few kinds don't you: Politicians, Welfare Recipients and Illegals.. or were you talking about the blood sucking kind? :D

  • Adam

    Have you ever tried… *no stickin bugs*? works great!!!!

  • adam

    Sorry I meant *No Stinkin Bugs* they also one one called *No stinkin Ticks* both work great though.

  • Dyrewulf

    Here in Georgia (Atlanta and west) I've had about a dozen ticks on me this year – I actually had to pull one off of a spot on my arm that was actually wet with 100% Deet. Best trick I've found is to turn your pants inside out, spray them down with repellant, then while you wait a minute or two for that to dry, spray your legs up to the knee, your socks and boots/shoes. Don't neglect the waistband of your pants, I've had two ticks get through there as well. Tucking in my shirt didn't help with that, but spraying around my waist with repellant, both on the skin and the clothes, works well. Be very careful spraying this, Deet ate my National Shooting Sports Foundation pin on my hat. It's now bare metal.

  • josh

    On an antibiotic right now because of a tick. About two weeks ago I had one get me pretty good and it wouldn't heal properly. My wife's uncle had lyme disease attack his brain last weekend, so Monday I was a the Doc. Doc said If I had gone in within three days it would have been a one does treatment but because I waited I have 21 days of morning and night pills. if you keep the tick and put it in scotch tape they can test it for lyme disease when you go in. Too risky to mess with, her uncle is in rough shape

  • Clint Hardesty

    Hey Melissa,

    Great tip. This has been a bad year for ticks here in east/central Oklahoma (probably cause we actually got some rain this year). Every time I went out hunting or scouting I'd come back with at least one tick in me. All the things that use to work (Deet, Zip ties around my pant legs, tucking everything in etc.) just weren't getting the job done. However, I tried the Sawyer's a few times and thus far it's worked like a charm. I appreciate the tip, I'd never even heard of Sawyers before. You're awesome.

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