Chiggers are tiny, six-legged wingless organisms (larvae) that grow up to become a type of mite. Chiggers are found in tall grass and weeds. Their bite causes severe itching. The chiggers bite humans around the waist, ankles, or in warm skin folds. Bites commonly occur in the summer and fall months.
Chiggers are the youth/larval form of a specific family of mites, the Trombiculidae. Mites are arachnids, like spiders, and are closely related to ticks. They are born red; they do not become red from feeding on blood. An engorged, well-fed chigger changes to a yellow color. Their bites inject saliva, which contains a digestive enzyme that dissolves the skin cells it contacts. This is why it itches. Warm soapy water and light rubbing is all that is necessary to remove and kill chiggers.
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