Red Bugs, Chiggers
Description of Chiggers, Elimination of Chiggers
A red bug or chigger (as it is properly called) is an immature stage (larvae) of the harvest mite. Like all mites, the harvest mite life cycle includes larva, nymph, and adult. In the last two stages, this mite feeds on plant materials. The stage that gets the attention of humans is the larval stage. This is the stage that is considered to be a pest, causing intense itching.
The tiny nymph (chigger) will infest humans (and other animals) usually
when we work or walk in tall grass or other such undergrowth. The chigger
has a mouthpart similar to that of a tick and uses this mouthpart for
feeding. But, unlike ticks, chiggers do not feed on our blood.
The chemicals or proteins in a chigger's saliva will cause itching in the
area where the tiny red bug feeds. This itching is delayed; we sense
intense itching about 24 to 48 hours after being exposed to chigger bites.
Some itching might be detected in 3 or 4 hours but the worst sensations (a day
or two later) are what fool us into believing that we picked up chiggers (or red
bugs, as they are sometimes called) in our lawn.
Chiggers do not bore into and live inside of our skin. Applying finger nail polish or other household chemicals to red bumps on our skin does not help. They will not burrow deep inside our body and eventually die. By the time your severe itching problem sets in, the chigger is nowhere in sight. Trying to smother a chigger with various products is a total waste of your time and might actually cause more problems.
Chiggers do not drink blood. They are red because that is their color. Chiggers drink liquefied skin cells. Ticks feed on blood; chiggers do not.
A chigger or red bug is not an adult bug. It is an immature larvae.
These pests are not insects; they are mites.
That tiny hole or red bump on your skin is not where chiggers lay eggs. A chigger is a baby, a harvest mite larvae. Only the adult harvest mite lays eggs.
Once you have established which area the chiggers have infested, you can
treat lawns, fence rows and ornamentals with Permethrin
Pro. Use one ounce of concentrate per 1,000 square feet of area to be
treated. Use a hose-end sprayer for applying to lawns, fence rows.