The complete life cycle of chiggers is from 40 to 70 days; the stage in which chiggers attach and feed on humans or animals lasts several days. After the larva chigger feeds, it detaches from the host to find a protected vegetated area to complete the development cycle.
The first stage of the chigger is the larval stage. The larva hatches in spring and goes in search of a human or animal host to feed on. About seven to ten days after hatching, the larva develops into a nymph. Another two weeks to one month later, the chigger develops into an adult.
To treat chigger bites, one should take a hot bath for at least a half an hour and apply a thick lather of soap. Then one should apply an antiseptic to kill any remaining chiggers. One should not scratch welts as this dislodges chiggers but may leave their mouth parts in place, possibly leading to infection.