Like fleas, ticks prefer feeding on mammals and birds. Their physical structures, as well as their modes of attack and feeding, are a bit different, however. For example, these spider-like parasites are in the arachnid family. Rather than breaking skin with a bite, they use sharp mandibles to pierce the skin. Perhaps the most noticeable difference is that ticks remain attached to their hosts until they are completely full. This is a process that can take a few days.
You're also more likely to pick up a tick outdoors than indoors. Their common habitats include woods, bushes and areas with tall grass. You should check yourself for ticks after spending time in such locations. Because a tick piercing is usually painless, you probably won't notice its presence without a visual check.
If you find a tick on yourself or a pet, remove it right away as these parasites carry potentially deadly illnesses like Rocky Mountain spotted fever and Lyme disease. The best method of removal is pull the tick out firmly with a pair of tweezers. You will then want to make sure the tick is thoroughly killed and be sure to wash the bite area with soap and water.
The next parasite on our list is the scourge of the public school system.