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Ask Winke Clothing & Apparel

How Do I Deal With Ticks While Hunting?

by Bill Winke   |  October 16th, 2012 6

I started bowhunting last year, but the bugs and seed ticks tear me up. What can I use to stop them and not spook deer? — Greg Litvinchyk, Ellsinore, MO

Thanks for that question, Greg, it’s a really good one. There are three solutions I am aware of that will work well when dealing with ticks. First, Cabela’s sells an undergarment  system called Bug Skinz that will keep them off your legs and upper body. This is a good system that I have used before. It is kind of warm on hot days, but worth it for sure.

The second method I have used on short trips outdoors during the late summer is to simply duct tape the cuffs of my pants to the tops of my boots. This works great and keeps the ticks on the outside. Of course, if you are going to be outside for long periods you will want more protection for your upper body.

The third method is a product from Game Hide called Elimi-Tick. This is a clothing line that has tick repellant built right into the fabric. I am not sure if it smells to the deer or not, but Game Hide promotes it heavily for bowhunters who are affected by ticks.

One of these three methods should work well for you. The first two are for sure odorless, though I’m not as familiar with the third method. A little more research is no doubt in order. Good luck.

  • RichardJPollack

    There are several fabric treatments available that contain permethrin. The liquid or aerosol product can be used to impregnate your clothing. Once dry, the pesticide binds tenaciously to the fabric, and you can wear those items. It is irritating to ticks and mosquitoes, and will generally cause ticks to die or drop off before they've had a chance to pass on infection. Despite dressing appropriately and using a good tick repellent, there's still a chance some ticks will find their way to skin. So, inspect nightly for ticks and remove any promptly. Save them for evaluation. If you're in the woods with your smartphone, you can capture digital images and submit these to for a rapid evaluation.

  • gary

    i have used permethrin for years and hunt in New Jersey ticks are all over . it works great also drys odorless and last about six washes before you have to respray . cost about $7 a bottle

  • BSlo

    You can buy permethrin concentrate, an 8 oz. bottle cost about $7. This will make up 8-20 oz containers, you mix it to be a concentration of .05 %. 20 parts water to 1 oz of concentrate. The stuff really does work, I scouted some thick awful bug infested areas this year in Delaware, and didn't find a tick one on me.

  • Lloyd

    I am a Consulting Forester in addition to being an avid bow hunter. I have used permethrin for years. As long as I treat my clothing, I never get bit by ticks or chiggers. Good stuff and after it dries on your clothing it is odorless.

  • Trevor

    Technically, the ticks should be a lot easier to deal with than going on a hunt like this itself. A few off-the-shelf items can easily get rid of these bugs.

  • Josh K.

    I have found a couple natural tick repellent recipes that are used. However, I'm not sure if they would be too potent to use and not be smelled by game. They are all natural and use natural oils and ingredients, unlike the harmful DEETS and other chemicals in the mass-marketed repellents. The most intriguing recipes I find, at least for me down here in Florida, is the citrus combination. Either way, I provided the link for your review. I am planing on putting together a few to try. Good luck!

    Josh K.

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