How many ticks is bad?
27th October 2019 at 7:44 am #19187
Can any one advise me, my female hog has around 4 to 5 ticks on her, one in her ear, one on her side in her ruff and some on her back, she is big and healthy and is eating and drinking well, do I intervene and remove them? She naps in the night in her hog house but is gone by morning I am worried one may fall off and lay eggs and she will get infested or something, although I do replenish her bedding weekly. Any advice appreciated.27th October 2019 at 10:19 pm #19212
The thing to bear in mind with ticks is that the bigger they look, the nearer they are to falling off. I wouldn’t be too worried about 4 or 5 (others might). You are right, they may lay eggs.
I’m not sure what you mean about replenishing her bedding. That sounds as if you are adding to it, in which case there could be eggs in the bedding underneath. It’s normally best not to replenish bedding (or even change bedding) but leave suitable bedding material nearby and let the hog replenish/renew, if she so wishes.
She could be tempted to nap in there in between snacking, without being too careful about potential parasites if there is bedding in there. When you are absolutely certain she is not in residence (and I don’t mean just out for the night, I mean completely vacated) then you could give the hog house a good clean out and use boiling water to kill any parasite eggs and tiny ticks. The eggs tend to get into any cracks in the joints etc. of hog house. So if she is only napping in there at night, theoretically you could clean it out properly during the day. Although, if she has been used to some bedding being in there at night, I might on this occasion, put some new bedding in. Just be aware that hay can sometimes have tick eggs in it.
If she is going to hibernate, hopefully she will make a proper hibernaculum, elsewhere, which won’t have parasite eggs in it. And hopefully the ticks on her will drop off before she goes into it.28th October 2019 at 8:28 am #19219
Thank you so much for your advice, They do look quite large so be gone soon I hope. By replenish I meant replace sorry for the confusion. I havnt used boiling water as yet but think I will next time. She uses it at the moment for napping through the night between meals and is gone by morning. I do leave leaves and straw around but she hasnt used it yet. Many thanks again for the help.31st October 2019 at 1:18 pm #19277
Thank you for that advice – I had video of one of my hogs with big round, dark marks which I feared that it may be been bitten. My local rescue told me that it could well be ticks – there must have been over 10 of these marks. It was a big, healthy hog and feeding and drinking happily. Does now go into the house and I have kept an eye on these marks. The marks now seem to have vanished unless I have a different hog visiting. I did not realise that the ticks could lay eggs in the house and now worry that it may be infected. Not good with the hibernation facing them. Not inclined to clean out house at this time, nor boiling water but do not know how to proceed.
Caring for these dear, little people is like having little children that you are looking after but only at a distance and in their own timetable – all very worrying for those inexperienced like me!31st October 2019 at 1:43 pm #19280
Same here hog devotee, I have a new hoglett visiting now , it is 315g, I have been in touch with my local rescue centre and have been given advice on how to proceed, so I am just educating myself the best way I can! This forum is very informative.31st October 2019 at 8:17 pm #19287
No, you definitely don’t want to be thinking of cleaning out a hog house if it’s being used. But normally a hog wouldn’t use the same nest twice, thus helping to reduce to any parasite problems. Obviously we hope that they will use our hog houses again, which is why (once absolutely certain that the hog has moved out) we try to get rid of any parasite eggs. It isn’t safe to use insecticides with hogs, hence the boiling water to kill any eggs. It also has the advantage of getting into the joins between the wood, where tiny ticks, etc. can hide. Once clean, dry, and parasite free, hopefully another hog might decide to use the box to build a nest in.
But sometimes we have to trust the hogs natural instincts to move on from a nest which has parasites in it.
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