Do Raccoons Eat Ticks? Raccoons And Ticks


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Do Raccoons Eat Ticks

Ticks are parasites that belong to the class of Arachnida. These parasites are not welcome everywhere because they suck the blood of animals and humans as well. Not only this, but they are also the host of several diseases that they can transmit to humans. However, several animals prey on ticks, but what about raccoons? Do raccoons eat ticks? Are ticks make a part of a raccoon’s meal?

However, raccoons are not the predators of ticks, but they never say no to eat ticks if they are readily available to them. As they can eat ticks to clean themselves if ticks will be on their body. Because ticks can attach themselves to the body of animals.

Domestic animals like cows, buffaloes, dogs, etc., can have ticks on their bodies. And in the wild, animals like squirrels, lizards, mice, deer, rabbits, and other rodents can have ticks on their bodies. However, ticks can also available on the body of big wild animals, and you can also find them in urban and coastal areas.

Not only animals but ticks can also suck human blood, and for that, they can attach to human bodies. And can transmit diseases to humans because they are carriers of several diseases.

Now, let’s dig more into the idea of raccoons eating ticks. And how raccoons react when ticks attach themselves to their bodies. So if you are interested to know about it, then navigate this article.

Do Raccoons Eat Ticks?

Raccoons are wild animals that belong to the family of Procyonidae. However, the exciting fact about raccoons is that they are opportunistic omnivorous animals. As they can eat both plant and animal base matter. But opportunistic omnivorous means that they eat animals based matter when it is readily available.

Besides this, raccoons are scavengers, as they can eat after scavenging food from your trash. As raccoons can eat anything depends upon the availability, then the same goes for the ticks. That’s why raccoons can eat ticks if they are readily available to them.

However, ticks are unable to fly and jump, but they can climb to their bodies. As attaching ticks cause continuous irritation in that place because they keep sucking blood. That’s why animals try to remove them from their body via different methods.

As, some animals try to remove them after rubbing their bodies against some hard material like a tree or a wall. And some animals like raccoons remove them from their body by eating them. However, this is also a self-cleaning method, but they are not the active predator of ticks.

Read also: What Can Raccoons Not Eat?

Do Raccoons Carry Ticks?

However, ticks can attach to the body of any animal, and raccoons are no exception. That’s why raccoons can also carry ticks. Now have a look at how ticks are move to the body of an animal from the other animal.

As ticks cannot jump and fly, that’s why they climb on the body of any animal. And for that, the ticks use their first two pair of legs on the body of the animal first and then their third and fourth pair of legs to attach themselves to an animal’s body.

However, ticks don’t move on the body of their prey as they can attach anywhere to suck blood from the body. And also, they don’t have any preferable target to suck blood. They just need blood, and for that, they can attach to the body of any animal.

What Are The Natural Enemies Of Ticks?

Ticks have a number of natural predators, including birds, mammals, certain microbes, etc. So now let’s discuss in detail about the natural enemies of the ticks.

Oxpeckers: These birds are also known as the tick birds as they love to eat ticks. And for that, they can even dare to sit on rhinos to eat ticks. Not only this, they can eat ticks from other animals like zebra, etc.

Chickens: These ground birds are also used to eat ticks. However, ticks are also the host of chickens and can attach to their body as well. And as ticks suck blood from the body, that’s why they can harm your chickens. Because of it, don’t provide too many ticks to your chickens.

Guinea Fowl And Turkeys: However, guinea fowl and turkeys like the most to eat ticks rather than chickens. As they especially hunt ticks for their meals. And the same goes for turkeys, as they both love to eat ticks and spend most of their time searching for ticks.

Possums: Like raccoons, possums are also opportunistic omnivorous animals. And they also can eat ticks when they are available to possums. Not only this, possums can eat ticks that are attached to their bodies for cleaning purposes.

Other Animals: However, many other animals like to eat ticks. For example, lizards, ants, squirrels, frogs, etc.

What Purposes Do Ticks Serve?

However, there are two essential purposes that these parasites serve to the ecosystem. Firstly, ticks make food for a number of ground birds like chickens, turkeys, etc.

Secondly, the most important purpose is to take nourishment from large animals in the food chain and transfer it to the smaller organisms.

A Final Thought:

This article serves you about do raccoons eat ticks? However, raccoons are not the natural predators of ticks, but as they are opportunistic eaters, that’s why they can eat ticks when available to them. Moreover, eating ticks from their own body is the cleaning purpose of raccoons.

However, not only raccoons but ticks have other number of predators like Oxpeckers, lizards, possums, chickens, guinea fowl, frogs, etc.