Do Ticks Fly or Have Wings? Tick Questing and Movement

Can Ticks Fly?

Do ticks fly? This is a common question when wondering how they move around. However, ticks do not have wings so they cannot fly.

Many people mistakenly believe that ticks drop from trees when a suitable host comes by. This leads to speculating on how ticks get into trees and assuming it must be by flying, thus enabling this myth to persist.

Ticks do not fly, run, or hop in order to infest a host. Instead, they climb up on brushy vegetation and wait for a host to pass by – a procedure known as questing.

Tick Questing and Movement

Ticks sense a passing host by detecting:

  • Carbon dioxide
  • Body heat
  • Odors
  • Moisture
  • Vibrations created by an approaching host.
When they recognize a potential host, they hold onto leaves and grasses with their third and fourth pairs of legs, while stretching and waving their first pair of legs.

They hold the first pair of legs outstretched, waiting to climb onto the host as it comes into contact with where the tick is waiting. The tick’s sensory structures, known as their Haller’s organs and located on the tick’s first pair of legs, enable the tick to recognize the sensory signals the host gives off.

Can Ticks Fly?

Ticks often wind up biting people in the armpit or groin. That’s a long way up for a tiny little tick. But how can something that hangs out in grass and on plants get up there? Do ticks jump to incredible heights? Can ticks fly? The truth might shock you.

Can ticks jump?

A flea can jump up to 13 inches high. If it were the size of a 6-foot person, that would be as high as 16-story building – an impressive feat for such a small insect. Given that both ticks and fleas like to share some of the same food sources, one might think that ticks are equally successful jumpers. However, this is not the case. In fact, ticks cannot jump at all.

Do ticks fly?

If they can’t jump, then certainly they can fly. Right? Ticks actually belong to the arachnida class – the same class as spiders, who thankfully can’t fly. Ticks cannot fly either and there are no species of ticks that have wings. But if they can’t jump and they can’t fly, then how do ticks get around? They have other tricks up their sleeves.

How do ticks find a host?

Ticks can be broken down into two categories. There are soft-shell ticks and hard-shell ticks. Soft-shell ticks act more like bed bugs when it comes to finding prey. They typically live in the nest of their hosts, crawl around the nest in search of food at night and partake in quick feeding sessions. Hard-shell ticks are a little different. Not only do they take longer to feed, they act more like web-building spiders when it comes to finding prey. Instead of going out on the prowl, hard-shell ticks find hosts through an action called questing.

What does questing mean?

Hard-shell ticks are patient insects. Much like web-building spiders, they lie in wait for their prey to come to them. To prepare for their prey, they quest, planting themselves on the grass or leaves and raising their front pair of legs in the air. Once in position, these ticks wait until a viable host brushes past, allowing them to climb on board.

So the next time someone asks you ‟can ticks fly” or ‟can ticks jump,” you can tell them that the answer is a resounding no. If you’re still concerned about ticks in and around your home, call Terminix® to find out what you can do to alleviate your worries.

Do Ticks JUMP From Dog to Human?

Now that tick season is upon us, it’s time for a refresher course on these disease carrying pests. If you or your dog has ever experienced a tick bite or worse, Lyme disease, you know all to well the dangers associated with tick season.

In this article, we’ll address some common (and not so common) questions about the habits of ticks. At the end of the article, you’ll find a detailed table that compares 3 products that kill and prevent ticks. But first, let’s answer some tick related questions:

Do Ticks Jump From Dog to Human or Can They Hop

How Ticks Attach

Thankfully, the answer to both is NO. Ticks cannot jump or hop and are only capable of crawling. So how do they get on your dog? They reach!

A tick that is ready to feed will make its way to the tippy top of a blade of grass. Once they reach the point, the tick patiently waits for the tell-tale signs of an approaching, blood-pumping host. They are:

Yes, ticks can feel the vibration of nearby movement, they can sense body heat and finally, they can smell a breathing host coming.

And as their host gets closer and closer, the tick hangs onto the grass with its back legs and reach its front legs into the air. Like a baby signaling they want to be picked up, the tick holds its front legs out and waits for you or your dog to brush against the blade of grass. Once you do, they easily make the transfer.

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Do Ticks Lay Eggs on Dogs

Yes, ticks lay eggs on dogs. When the egg hatches it will be in the form of larvae and will need to bite your dog and feed on the blood. This is why it’s so important to check your dog for ticks. You will not be able to see tick eggs, but if you find a tick, you can assume eggs.

Can You Get Ticks From Your Dog

If your dog has ticks, yes, you can also get ticks from the ticks on your dog. Here’s how:

If your dog has a female tick, it’s very likely to be laying eggs on your dog. When those eggs hatch, the larvae will feed off of your dog and then usually fall off. After they fall off they morph from larvae to tick and will eventually need to feed again.

If you are the the closest host, you will be selected. Which leads us to our next topic which is: can dog ticks bite humans and feed off human blood?

Can Dog Ticks Bite Humans?

While a dog tick prefers the canine for it’s host, a dog tick can absolutely bite a human. Not only can dog ticks bite humans, but dog ticks can survive off human blood as it is closely related to that of a canine.

Can Ticks Live in the House

Ticks can live in your house but they cannot feed off of your house. They can feed off you or your dog, drop off, find a moist environment to survive and hop back on to feed as necessary.

Or, ticks can stay on the host to feed and mate at will if conditions are favorable. This is what a fed tick looks like:

They get so fat that they are prone to falling off.

Where are Ticks Most Commonly Found

Ticks thrive in warm moist environments because that type of climate allows them to stay strong, fertile and hydrated. The problem with warm, moist environments is that it makes for slim pickins’ when it comes to finding a viable host for feeding and breeding (laying eggs).

In an ideal tick world, ticks would live in a nice, moist forest floor and would have plenty of hosts to choose from. However, that’s not the case. Aside from the occasional deer, skunk, raccoon, mouse, bird, etc., ticks don’t have a lot of options in the forest which means: they have to make their way to warmer, drier environments in order to latch onto a viable, blood-filled host.

You’d be wise to protect your dog and yourself when venturing into the woods to avoid being a walking buffet for the ticks in waiting. But don’t be fooled into thinking ticks limit themselves to damp areas. They do what they need to do in order to find a host and that means moving to less favorable environments where dogs and humans are readily available.

Do Ticks Have Wings

Many people mistake the poplar weevil for ticks…and for good reason. It isn’t until you get up close and personal with the poplar weevil that you see it’s not a tick, but bears striking resemblance. Here is a poplar weevil

Ticks do NOT have wings and absolutely cannot fly. So if some little bug is flying at you or your dog, it is not a tick. Ticks also have 8 legs as they are part of the (gross) arachnid family and poplar weevil’s have just 6 legs.

Where Do Ticks Hide?

When searching for a host, ticks hide in plain site. They put themselves out there for the world to see but the problem is they go undetected because they are so tiny.

It’s common to think that ticks are intentionally hiding in pant-legs or bedding but hiding is probably not the right word. Ticks crawl and they take their time in order to ensure they reach their destination.

If they’ve made it onto your dog’s fur or your pant leg, they will typically stop and “hold tight” whenever there is motion. Ticks know that if they can wait in a rolled pant cuff until you stop walking, they have a better chance of not falling off. So it seems like they are hiding, but they are just waiting for less motion.

As for sheets and blankets, ticks will move into the folds and creases because the temperature is cooler than being right in the open. Folds and creases also help to protect ticks from sun or heat.

How to Get Rid of Ticks on Dogs

The best form of treatment is always prevention. If you live in a high tick region and you and your dog enjoy the outdoors, there are products that repel ticks and make your dog an unsavory host.

If you see a tick on your dog, you remove it slowly with a good set of tweezers. You do not want to break the tick’s body away from the head as that is likely to cause infection. There are really good videos online if you are in this situation. Go to youtube and search – dog tick removal.

If you see more than 1 tick on your dog or in your home then there are likely to be many more and you may need products that help kill ticks on contact and stop the egg, larvae, tick cycle.

Where to Buy Tick Protection and What Type is Best for Dogs

For tick collars and tick topicals my first recommendation is that you check amazon’s featured pet deal page. This is where amazon promotes some steeply discounted pet products and it seems like every season I luck out and get a tick collar for at least half price. My dog doesn’t wear it 24×7, but I put it on him the night before a wooded or grassy outing and I keep it stored in a tin.

Chewable Tick Protection

The type of flea prevention that’s leading the pack is the soft chew tick treatment called Bravecto. This Bravecto is so popular because it’s a one time dose that lasts for 3 months and it’s all in just one chew tab.

It will keep fleas and ticks away and it will fight a current infestation so it’s not just for preventing. It kills Fleas, black-legged ticks, American dog tick, and brown dog tick.

Most vets carry Bravecto and you can buy it from them at a premium. You’ll pay a high price, but at least you’ll have it that day. If you are not battling a current tick infestation and can wait for Bravecto to be shipped to you, there are far better prices online.

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Buy Bravecto Online Cheap

The two places that carry it regularly (and affordably) are Canada Pet Care and Chewy. I’ve included direct links below, but first…a little about each company.

About CanadaPetCare: Do not confuse Canada Pet Care with Canada. They ship worldwide and your package may come from the UK, Canada, Germany, France, Asia, etc.. They usually have the best price AND they ship free no matter the size of the order.

However, their biggest customer complaint is slow shipping. While they ship within 24 hours, you won’t receive your package for about a week, sometimes longer. Their website states you’ll receive your order in 21 business days or they’ll refund. So…know that going in.

Here is a snippet of their guarantee:

Every purchase at comes with our Money Back Guarantee. If your order is not delivered within 21 business days or if for any reason you are not satisfied with your order, please contact our customer service and we will offer you a full refund on your purchase.

So, if you desperately need the item, get it from your vet’s office or go to chewy because chewy ships faster. But if you’re buying for mulitple pets and can afford the wait, you’ll save a good amount at

About Chewy: If you’ve not yet browsed the savings at, I encourage you to take a moment and compare everything you’re currently buying for your dog (or other animals) and how they’re priced on chewy.

I’ve personally saved lots of money and now I always tell my vet “give me the prescription because my dog is signed up at” This usually gets me the prescription in hand….or my vet sometimes offers to match chewy’s price. Nice! Coupon for Bravecto

Some people call it Canada Pet Meds but it’s Canada Pet Care. has a promo on Bravecto which means it will probably be the cheapest place right now. Click the link below to be taken to the product and choose the Bravecto that matches your dog’s weight.

Then Use promo code: CPC12ON for an extra 12% off. Here is the link:

Chewy.Com – Bravecto

Chewy has really good prices too but they don’t ship free unless it’s a special offer or you reach $49 (which is easy to do). In any case, it’s always worth checking them out and buying from the cheapest place:

Alternatives to Bravecto: Collars and Topical Flea and Tick Prevention

The table below compares two popular tick products for dogs and is meant to demonstrate all the things to consider when making your selection. A lot will depend on why you need the tick product such as prevention vs. infestation. Use the table below as a helpful guide.

But remember to always check amazon’s featured pet deals (link) first! You may just find an incredible deal on a tick collar or topical treatment.

Between Chewy and CanadaPetCare you’ll likely find that CanadaPetCare is cheaper, but Chewy ships much faster. Have a look at the products and read customer reviews. All of these should help you make a better informed decision.

Click the Images to See CanadaPetCare Prices and Click The Last Row for Chewy Prices.

Click Pic for Price

Click Pic For Price
Check Chewy Price
(Link to Product)
Check Chewy Price
(Link to Product)
K-9 Advantix II Frontline Plus
Kills Ticks, Fleas,
Mosquitoes, Lice
Ticks, Fleas,
Chewing Lice
Repels The Above Plus
Biting Flies
All of The Above
Application Topical Topical
Starts Working 12 Hours 12 Hours
Pros Waterproof
Kills Without Biting
Kills Without Biting
Cons Toxic to Cats Toxic to Cats
Dog Age
Over 7
Over 8
Lasts Up to 1 Month Up to 1 Month


Takeaways – about ticks and tick season

Ticks are not just in the woods. Though they really enjoy a moist, cool environment, they are resilient and extremely hardy parasites. They do what they need to do to find a host.

They need blood in order to live and will choose their best option, even if it’s for a quick feeding.

If you find a tick has penetrated your skin or your dog’s it’s recommended to save the tick in a tight bottle (like a pill bottle) and seek medical advice. Bring the tick with you so it can be tested for Lyme disease.

«Flying ticks» invading area are not ticks at all

Greg Larry

Poplar weevil’s shown on a yellow swing set at the Glendening Park Playground in Frostburg. The insects are often mistaken for ticks, earning them the nickname of «Flying ticks.»

CUMBERLAND — Move over stink bugs, the poplar weevil is here. Sometimes referred to as “flying ticks,” the latest insect invasion has arrived in the tri-state region. But not to worry, the insects are not ticks at all.

Residents in the area are reporting seeing the tiny black bugs everywhere including on cars, lawn furniture, window wells and playground equipment.

“I was stopped by a woman at the Glendening Park Playground and she was concerned about them. A lot of people are confusing them for ticks,” said Brian Vought, Frostburg’s director of parks and recreation.

Harmless to humans, the poplar weevil seems to be replacing the stink bug as the latest insect invader of the mid-Atlantic region.

Officially known as yellow poplar weevil, the insects are not yellow at all. These diminutive black/brown bugs appear during the summer months. However, every four to five years, they can be seen in large numbers.

The term yellow in the insects’ name refers to the poplar weevil’s attraction to the color yellow, along with bright safety green and white.
“People think they are ticks. You really have to take a close look at them,” said Vought.

At first glance they may resemble ticks, however, a closer look reveals the differences. The poplar weevil, about 3/16-inch long, can fly and has six legs and an elongated snout. Ticks have eight legs and do not fly. Also, the body of the poplar weevil is “humped,” with ticks being generally flat.

Dee Dee Ritchie, executive director of Canal Place, also had a run in with the poplar weevil at Glendening Park.

“I was at the yellow swings with my granddaughter. They were all over the place,” said Ritchie.

Ritchie was not alarmed by the bugs because she lives in the country and knows a tick when she sees it.

“They kept flying and we were flinging them with our fingers,” said Ritchie.

Poplar weevils are not dangerous to humans and do not carry lyme disease. Unless you are a magnolia or tuliptree, you have nothing to worry about.

The weevil can cause considerable browning to trees. Other trees they are drawn to include evergreen and sassafras trees.

The damage to the trees is normally cosmetic and does not permanently injure the tree.

The poplar weevil, unlike ticks, have antennae. The weevils do not deliver a bite. When disturbed, they often fly away.

The weevils are often seen in June and July across Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Maryland. The good news is they are expected to be gone by August.

The brown marmorated stink bug has been seen in enormous numbers throughout the mid-Atlantic region in recent years. The stink bugs are proving to be difficult to irradicate due to their tolerance to pesticides.

Thousands of blood-sucking ticks found on bodies of Canadian moose

Canadian researchers study impact of warming winters as parasites move north

This story is part of a CBC News series entitled In Our Backyard, which looks at the effects climate change is having in Canada, from extreme weather events to how it’s reshaping our economy.

Flying over southern New Brunswick in a helicopter, it doesn’t take long to spot moose running through the snow in the forest beneath. What isn’t visible from the air are the thousands of ticks invading their bodies.

In nearby New Hampshire and Maine, over a three-year period, scientists found an alarming 70 per cent of calves didn’t make it through their first winter due in large part to tick infestation, according to a study in the Canadian Journal of Zoology. In some cases, up to 80,000 ticks were found on a single moose.

Researchers from the universities of New Brunswick and Laval are now studying how ticks survive in the differing climates of New Brunswick and Quebec — and how that affects moose.

Their data show moose populations in both provinces have been healthy and growing over the past three decades, but wildlife biologist Serge Couturier says warmer winters and less snow cover make it easier for ticks to survive.

«Global warming is likely increasing their abundance,» he said in an interview in the woods near Tracy, N.B. «The northern limit is moving north, and north, and north.»

External parasites

Ticks are an external parasite. They feed on the animal’s blood, staying on their skin for the fall and winter, until they drop off to lay their eggs on vegetation. Unlike deer ticks, which carry Lyme disease, winter ticks do not carry diseases that can be transmitted to humans. According to the Canadian Wildlife Health Co-operative, the meat of infected animals is suitable for humans to eat.

Jean-Pierre Tremblay, a professor in the department of biology at Laval University in Quebec City and principal investigator on the moose research project, says unlike other species, such as white-tailed deer, moose tolerate the ticks until it’s too late. Many moose end up weak with anemia.

Their skin also becomes inflamed and they change their behaviour, he says, spending more time grooming, rubbing against trees until their fur comes off and less time eating.

«That’s a critical time of year, at the end of winter, when they have used most of their fat reserve, especially for calves,» said Tremblay.

Trapping a moose

When the team spotted a moose from the air, Couturier shot a net from the helicopter to trap the animal — a technique he says is «very efficient, very safe» for the animals.

On the ground, a veterinarian was on hand to sedate the animal, monitor her breathing and temperature, and generally keep her comfortable.

«She’s not really anesthetized, just sedated,» said Dr. Benjamin Lamglait, after he had injected a 172-kilogram female calf. «We want her to be calm.»

The moose lay on the ground in the snow, her tongue lolling out of her mouth, a mask over her eyes, also to keep her calm.

When the scientists pulled open her fur, they revealed dozens of ticks attached to a tiny patch of the animal’s skin, literally sucking the life out of it. They estimated there were many thousands on her entire body.

When the team finished working on the moose they captured, the vet administered a reversal injection and within three minutes the animal woke up and walked away.

The team is in the process of weighing, measuring and tagging 116 moose with GPS collars in New Brunswick and Quebec. Half of them will be treated with a pesticide used to kill ticks and half won’t. This will help them determine whether the moose are dying from ticks or some other factor.

«Our GPS collars, we can control them remotely so we can get a location once every hour, or once every several hours,» said UNB master of science student Douglas Munn, who along with the other New Brunswick researchers is based in Fredericton.

Munn explained that the collars also track the animal’s activity in 15-minute increments, which he says allows him to determine whether heavily parasitized moose differ in how they move and select habitats.

Future forest management

J.D. Irving Woodlands Division is one of 16 partners on the project, including Parks Canada, the Government of Quebec and the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

Andrew Willett, director of research for J.D. Irving, says the company needs to understand how climate change is affecting the wildlife on its lands so that it can understand how the habitat is changing in order to potentially adapt its forest management.

«We’re planting a tree today, we’re going to harvest it in 40 years’ time,» he said. «The climate is going to be completely different in 40 years than it is today.»

The scientists say the work is important in part because the moose is such an emblematic animal in Canada.

«They’re an important game species,» said Munn. «But also because they’re valued spiritually by First Nations and Native Americans in the United States and Canada, and also because of their role in ecological systems.»

  • C C says:

    A few years ago, when I was just beginning my spiritual journey, I was sitting in meditation in absolute connection when I suddenly felt this huge wings sprouting from my back. And then I heard my inner voice say, «Earth Angel». When I came out of meditation, I was super gobsmacked about what just happened. This is not a term I had ever heard of b4 nor even knew what it meant! I quickly went on google and entered that term, and oh my, I was super grateful to discover that I was not going crazy. Melanie, you just took me back to that time I first learned about this. Thank You! 🙏💖

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