Chiggers in Georgia

What are Chiggers in Georgia?

Chiggers are small parasitic mites that are found in Georgia and across the United States. They are also known as harvest mites, red bugs, or scrub-itch mites. Chiggers are typically found in wooded areas and areas of tall grass.

What Do Chiggers Look Like?

Chiggers are incredibly tiny and difficult to spot. They are bright red in color, often almost a magenta color, and measure just 0.2mm. These mites are eight-legged, like other arthropods.

What Kind of Damage Do Chiggers Cause?

Chiggers will typically latch onto your skin and feast on your blood. This is known as “feeding behavior” and can cause irritation and intense itching. If left untreated, chigger bites can develop a small red bump and can cause skin infections.

How Can I Avoid Chiggers?

There are several steps you can take to avoid chigger infestations in Georgia.

    • Stay on Paths: When in wooded areas or tall grass, stay on paved or trampled paths. This will reduce the chance of being exposed to chiggers.
    • Apply Repellents: Use insect repellent products that contain DEET when hiking or doing other outdoor activities. Be sure to apply to all exposed skin.
    • Wear Appropriate Clothing: Wear pants and long-sleeved shirts when hiking or doing other outdoor activities. This will reduce the chance of skin exposure to itching from chiggers.
    • Check for Chiggers: After engaging in outdoor activities, always check for chiggers. If you suspect chigger activity, shower and apply hot water with soap to the area.


Chiggers can be found all over the Georgia countryside during the warmer months, but you can take the necessary precautions to avoid them. By using insect repellent, wearing appropriate clothing, and staying on paths, you can protect yourself and your family from chiggers and their bite.

In recent years, many Georgia residents have become familiar with the presence of chiggers within the state. Also known as “red bugs” or “harvest mites” due to the timing of their peak season, chiggers are a type of mite that feeds on host species, such as humans, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and other mammals. Although chiggers themselves do not transmit disease, their presence can lead to extreme itching, discomfort, and even secondary skin infections.

Chiggers are found in many different habitats throughout Georgia but are most common in wooded and heavily vegetated areas. In these settings, chiggers can be found in tall grass, weeds, and around the roots and lower parts of shrubs. Living as larvae until feeding, chiggers tend to attach to a host, feed, engorge, and then detach, leaving behind an itchy red spot hours later.

Though knowledge about chiggers and their prevention can be limited, fortunately, there are some preventative measures that can be taken to avoid encountering them. Adopting an attitude of awareness when entering wooded and heavily vegetated areas is critical. Wearing long-sleeved shirts and pants, as well as tucking shirts and pants into socks and boots can also create a barrier between the host and the chiggers. After leaving the area, it is important to bathe and wash clothes immediately as this can help to remove any chiggers that may be clinging to skin or clothing.

In addition to preventative measures, there are certain traditional treatments available to help relieve itching caused by chigger bites. Some of these treatments include the application of calamine lotion or hydrocortisone cream to affected areas, as well as soothing oatmeal baths and cool compresses. However, if symptoms persist for over a few days, professional medical attention may be required.

In conclusion, chiggers are a known presence in Georgia and are most often found in wooded and heavily vegetated areas. Preventative measures, such as wearing long clothes and bathing after entering these habitats, can help to reduce the chances of being bitten. Additionally, a variety of traditional treatments are available to help relieve the itching caused by chigger bites. If, however, symptoms do not subside over time, professional medical attention should be sought.

Also Read: Chiggers vs Poison Ivy!

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