Panhandle Health District 800-878-2364

Pests, Mold, Ticks, and Bed Bugs

We have no jurisdiction over inspections or cleanup for bedbugs, mold, or pests. This page is an informational page only. If you have any questions please contact the city code office, county code office, or local pest control.

Pests

Vector Control

Environmental Health Specialists and Epidemiologists provide information to help control mice, ticks, mosquitoes, or other known vectors of disease. For more information contact a local Pest Control or call your local Public Health District office.

Rabies

Rabies is a preventable viral disease most often transmitted through the bite of a rabid animal. The vast majority of rabies cases reported each year occur in wild animals like raccoons, skunks, bats, and foxes. While most bats are harmless and do not carry rabies, they are the only animal in Idaho to naturally carry the virus.

To protect yourself and your pets from rabies:

  • Do not touch a bat with your bare hands;
  • If you have had an encounter with a bat, seek medical attention immediately;
  • If you come in contact with a bat, save the bat in a container without touching it and contact us to arrange testing for rabies.
  • Always vaccinate your pets, including horses. Pets may encounter bats outdoors or in the home;
  • Bat-proof your home or cabin by plugging all holes in the siding and maintaining tight-fitting screens on windows.

For more information, visit this website.

Bed Bugs

The common bed bug has long been a pest – feeding on blood, causing itchy bites, and generally irritating their human hosts. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) all consider bed bugs a public health pest. However, unlike most public health pests, bed bugs are not known to transmit the spread of disease.

Learn more here.

Mold

Mold spores are everywhere. Some are dangerous, others are used in food. Learn more about the dangerous types of mold, and what you can do to prevent it, here. Panhandle Health District does not have the jurisdiction to inspect, treat, or clean up mold in private or public buildings.

We have no jurisdiction over inspections or cleanup for bedbugs, mold, or pests. This page is an informational page only. If you have any questions please contact the city code office, county code office, or pest abatement center.

Ticks

Tick exposure can occur year-round, but ticks are most active during warmer months (April-September). Know which ticks are most common in your area.

Before You Go Outdoors

  • Know where to expect ticks. Ticks live in grassy, brushy, or wooded areas, or even on animals. Spending time outside walking your dog, camping, gardening, or hunting could bring you in close contact with ticks. Many people get ticks in their own yard or neighborhood.
  • Treat clothing and gear with products containing 0.5% permethrin. Permethrin can be used to treat boots, clothing and camping gear and remain protective through several washings. Alternatively, you can buy permethrin-treated clothing and gear.
  • Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellents containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone. EPA’s helpful search tool can help you find the product that best suits your needs. Always follow product instructions.
    • Do not use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months old.
    • Do not use products containing OLE or PMD on children under 3 years old.
  • Avoid Contact with Ticks
    • Avoid wooded and brushy areas with high grass and leaf litter.
    • Walk in the center of trails.

After You Come Indoors

Check your clothing for ticks. Ticks may be carried into the house on clothing. Any ticks that are found should be removed. Tumble dry clothes in a dryer on high heat for 10 minutes to kill ticks on dry clothing after you come indoors. If the clothes are damp, additional time may be needed. If the clothes require washing first, hot water is recommended. Cold and medium temperature water will not kill ticks.

Examine gear and pets. Ticks can ride into the home on clothing and pets, then attach to a person later, so carefully examine pets, coats, and daypacks.

Shower soon after being outdoors. Showering within two hours of coming indoors has been shown to reduce your risk of getting Lyme disease and may be effective in reducing the risk of other tickborne diseases. Showering may help wash off unattached ticks and it is a good opportunity to do a tick check.

Check your body for ticks after being outdoors. Conduct a full body check upon return from potentially tick-infested areas, including your own backyard. Use a hand-held or full-length mirror to view all parts of your body. Check these parts of your body and your child’s body for ticks:

  • Under the arms
  • In and around the ears
  • Inside belly button
  • Back of the knees
  • In and around the hair
  • Between the legs
  • Around the waist

For more information on ticks visit the CDC’s website.