Thanks in advance for your advice.
I'm wondering what these might be, and if I should be concerned, and
then what action to take.
We've recently discovered 4 sliver, shiny, insect eggs in our kitchen.
The eggs are about as big in diameter as a dime. The surface is smooth
and glassy, but not transparent. They are almost like a paint ball,
except for the many wiggling leggs that protrude through the surface.
(maybe as many as eight)
My daughter was home with her boyfriend when she found one and squished
it under the leg of a chair. Again in the kitchen. It splattered red
blood onto the floor, enough to need a few paper towels to clean up. I
only saw the papper towels - it was definately red blood!
I found one of these a few days ago, and my wife had found one the day
before that. We got rid of them in the trash can. The one I found, I
wrapped in a few paper towels and squashed in my hand. I could tell
that inside the paper, the egg exploded and left a lot of juice but I
really did'nt care to know more!
Not to steer you in a specific direction, but two weeks ago, we were in
Northern Wisconsin (2 hours form here by car) and we found a tick on
the dog when we got home. We removed the tick. Could these new eggs be
thanks again for any info you may have, or suggestion on where to find
We do have a dog that had one tick but we removed it and searched for
others and we did'nt find any more. This looks like an egg because
it's round - like you could roll it across the floor. They are a half
inch in diameter - could this really be a tick? and could the vet
figure it out from the squashed ones if we bring them in?
A fully engorged dog tick can get about that big, yes. IME, they are roughly
the size and shape of a purplish grey kernel of corn. Once they get to that
point, they drop off. Is your dog long-haired?
Here's a lovely shot of an engorged tick, about 1 cm long:
you guessed it, she's a silky terrier. We have an appt at the vet
tomorrow. Right now she seems fine so the wait should be ok I think.
Should I be concerned about ticks that might be lying-in-wait around
North American ticks go through 3 life stages: larva, nymph, and adult. They
attach on to a mammal host during each of those stages, then drop off, molt,
and finally search for their next host. The whole process takes up to 2
years. The egg mass is pretty sizeable compared to the female tick that lays
it, so you probably would have noticed it when the one got squished.
They're a vector for the transmission of diseases precisely because they go
from one host to another across the life cycle. So, even if any did hatch
out in your house, they'd have to encounter a host animal with a disease
before they could transmit it to your household occupants. The smaller life
stages also typically latch on to smaller hosts, such as mice.
I would collect the "eggs" in a jar or other container and take them to the
vet immediately for identification. They probably are ticks. Last year at
exactly this time our dog became gravely ill and spent a week hooked up to
IVs and feeding tubes while fighting for her life. The bill came to over
$3000! It turned out that she got Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever from a tick
bite. Later she lost the vision in both eyes due to glaucoma and
complications from the RMSF and we had to have both of her eyes removed.
Your vet might want to run titer tests if the "eggs" turn out to be ticks.
There is also a chance of Lyme disease, so you should discuss that along
with the other possible tick bourn diseases. If your dog starts to show
signs of distress (loss of coordination, rapid eye movement, inability to
stand) get it to an emergency facility immediately and let them know about
Being boys and playing in vacant lots and drainage ditches we once got
yhe brilliant notion to see who could grow the biggest tick.
They get the size of a small grape and are quite glossy when full.
Got a magnifying lens? After you look at them and see the legs and
mouth parts through the lens you can take them outside and broil em
with the lens.
As for your description of a full tick - sounds right on with what I've
As far as your boyhood fun - That was a great story!, sounds like
something one of my neighborhood pals would have thought of when I was
a kid. His name was Chucky - He once gassed a frog and then cut it
open to shock it back to life with a 9volt.
Chucky has since disappeared!!
Thanks for chiming in ;-)
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