Do Pheasants Carry Ticks? (Answered)

by Chukay Alex
Updated on

Ticks are parasitic insects that feed on blood. Even after a bite, they are known to remain stuck to the flesh. 

The majority of this parasite is found in animals. Hairy animals like dogs, sheep, squirrels and other rodents are likely to have them.

Humans may have them on their bodies as well. Though this is uncommon because humans are not as hairy as animals.

But, how about pheasants, do they carry ticks? Well, let’s find that out. 

Do Pheasants Carry Ticks?

Do Pheasants Carry Ticks

Yes, pheasants do carry ticks. Ticks are very visible on the skin of your bird if it has them. They are most commonly found around their heads, eyes, and mouths.

So, you may need to constantly check these areas. 

When a bird is afflicted with ticks, symptoms may not appear for days. But when it does, the bird would display signs of depression in the most severe cases. 

It may also start passing greenish diarrhea. And its temperature would most certainly be high.

Continue reading this article to learn more about ticks in pheasants. 

Do Pheasants Eat Tick? 

Ticks, like all living things, have predators. Ticks are eaten by animals such as ants, spiders, and birds (including pheasants). 

This has resulted in the usage of birds, particularly guinea fowl, turkey, and chickens, as tick management. 

Pheasants do not, however, feed on ticks regularly. In addition, they consume extremely few ticks. So, they’re ineffective at controlling tick populations. 

These birds may also serve as tick hosts. As a result, their effectiveness as a biological tick control agent is limited.

Over a decade, 300,000 turkeys have been released to eat ticks. According to a study, the majority of these birds are pheasants and chukars. 

Related: Here is an article I wrote on why pheasants have a long tail

How Do You Remove Tick’s From Pheasants

When ticks are through feeding, they will naturally find their way off their victims body. This does not, imply that it will be gone permanently.

They will certainly return when they are hungry again. 

However, there is a way out. The following are steps for removing ticks from pheasants

Use tweezers: Grasp the tick with tweezers and gently pull it out. Do this in a slow motion. This may be uncomfortable to the bird. It’s ideal to do this while they’re relaxed. Petting your bird can also help it to be relaxed.

The use of insecticides: Insecticidesare one method for getting rid of bird ticks. The liquid concentrate will undoubtedly discourage dust mites from invading your home, making this a very efficient stress reliever.

These insecticides can be applied both inside and outside your pheasant’s pen. Do this regularly. But, make sure the peasants aren’t in their pen when you do this. They can also react negatively to the smell of insecticides.

The use of tick repellents: Tick repellents both repel and kill ticks and other bug species. It can also be used on body of your birds.

Some repellents have no odor, whilst others have. You have to follow all of the directions on the box label to avoid missing any.

Tea tree essential oil works great for removing ticks. Use the essential oil on a cotton bud to cover the tick’s body. This will anaesthetize the ticks. And then, it will loosen its jaws.

There are several other repellent that work just fine as well. But the most effective repellent include ingredients like DEET, Permethrin, Picaridin and oil of lemon eucalyptus.

Bath the birds regularly: Bathing your birds regularly also helps to get rid of ticks. A neat bird is not likely to have ticks coming around. This is because a bad odor attracts ticks to animals.

Also ensure to clean and disinfect their cage regularly. Having a clean bird in a dirty cage counts for nothing. The bad smell from the cage can also invite ticks.

Confined in a vet: In severe circumstances, it is best to call a veterinarian. An avian vet is well-versed in the world of birds. They will advise you on the best way to get rid of ticks.

Also check out this article I wrote on why pheasants hiss

How Well Do Pheasants Control Ticks

True, most people introduced the use of birds, including pheasants, for tick management. 

However, research reveals that pheasants are ineffective at controlling ticks. 

This is also true for other birds. This is because these birds, in turn, become prey to these blood-sucking parasites. 

Instead of preventing tick spread, they carry the parasites on their feathers. Şekercioĝlu, a bird expert and ornithologist, has criticized the sale of birds for pest control.

He added that if they continue, they may wind up doing the reverse of what they are intended to do. 

To be honest, I agree with him. These bugs should be kept away from birds. As much as possible, keep ticks away from your birds.

Are Ticks Good For Anything 

Obviously, these parasites are dangerous to birds and other animals. So, why not get rid of them completely?

Well, if this is the question you have in mind, here’s what we have to say. 

It is not feasible to eliminate ticks. And it’s also not a good idea. This is because ticks are not as useless as you may believe. They have numerous advantages. Let’s have a look at some of its advantages. 

Source of food: Ticks are a source of food for several species, including birds, reptiles, and amphibians. This also aids in tick population reduction.

They help keep a watch on the environment: Ticks help scientists monitor the ecology. Do you want to know how it works? Let’s find out. 

Scientists believe that when ticks are plentiful, the population of smaller mammals such as squirrels and rabbits is likely to be high. 

On the other hand, when tick populations are low, the opposite becomes the case. It indicates that predators of smaller animals may be out of control. 

Do Pheasants Carry Lyme Disease

Yes, pheasants have Lyme disease. But it is not harmful to them. Lyme disease may, however, be detrimental to other creatures. 

Pheasants are the carriers of the bacteria that cause Lyme disease. If you didn’t know this, it may be a shocker.

There’s usually a misconception that ticks are the carriers of this disease.

Well, ticks are not the original carriers of this disease. Instead, they become infected with Lyme disease through pheasant blood, which they consume.

And so, an infected tick can transmit the disease to other animals it preys on.

Surprisingly, they can transmit the disease to humans as well. Tick attacks on humans, on the other hand, are uncommon.

As stated earlier, these parasites would rather stick to creatures with a lot of hair. 

Nonetheless, Lyme disease has been shown to induce paralysis and inflammation of the brain in humans. This doesn’t make it a hopeless situation. Most cases of Lyme disease are curable. 

It will require a 2-4 week course of oral antibiotics. Patients with Lyme disease experience pain, exhaustion, and problems thinking.

This frequently lasts for six months or longer following therapy.

Can You Catch Disease From Pheasants 

Yes, you can. Pheasants can transmit sickness to humans. Psittacosis is a disease carried by pheasants. Chlamydia psittaci is the bacterium that causes it.

It is typically transmitted to people by birds. It is a very frequent sickness among birds. 

Birds can carry this virus without showing symptoms of illness. Nonetheless, this sickness can be deadly to birds. 

This disease can cause the following symptoms in birds: diarrhea, weakness, loss of appetite, runny eyes and nose, and ruffled feathers. 

Studies have shown that about 50% of birds may die from this infection if left untreated. Antibiotics are usually successful in treating this disease. However, always consult a vet before giving any medication to your bird.

Birds can carry this virus without showing symptoms of illness. Nonetheless, this sickness can be deadly to birds. 

This disease can cause the following symptoms in birds: diarrhea, weakness, loss of appetite, runny eyes and nose, and ruffled feathers. 

Also, you can get your bird examined by a veterinarian regularly to guarantee that it is in great health.

However, if necessary precautions are not followed, bird owners and pet shop personnel, poultry workers, veterinaries, and others are more likely to get infected. 

Inhaling the feather of an infected bird might cause infection. Mouth-to-beak kissing can potentially infect you. 

Handling sick birds’ feathers or tissues can also infect you. Contact with contaminated aborted material, placentas, or sick foals can also result in transmission.

People infected with psittacosis experience the following symptoms: headache, fever, weakness, dry cough, chest pain, and shortness of breath. 


Ticks are parasitic bloodsuckers. They become stuck on the flesh of animals and humans alike.

Ticks are also carried by pheasants. Pheasants have been found to infect these parasites with Lyme disease.

Ticks on your bird are quite easy to spot. They are quite visible on their skin.

Ticks are also eaten by pheasants. Pheasants, along with other birds, are used in some countries to get rid of ticks. This, however, isn’t an effective way to expel these parasites.

Using pesticides and repellents is the most effective technique to get rid of ticks.

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About the author

Chukay Alex

Chukay is a season writer and farmer who enjoys farming and growing plants in his backyard farm. When he is not farming you can find him at the nearest lawn tennis court, hitting a mean backhand down the line.


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