Flea Insect

Flea Species, Types, Facts, Diet, Life cycle, Get Rid, Reproduction are given here. Flea can be really irritating for Animals and even for Human.

What is Flea?

Fleas are the wingless insects from the order Siphonaptera. These are the external parasites which feed the blood from the mammals, birds and humans as well. The adult flea can up to 3 mm long only and usually have the brown skin color. These have the strong claws that protect them from losing grip from the hosts.

Flea facts

They have the wings and adapted for piercing skin and sucking blood. They have the hind legs for jumping. There is more than two thousand of flea species exists all over the world. The fleas do not possess the compound eyes, unlike other insects, although they only have simple eyespots with a single biconvex lens.

Types of Fleas

Fleas have the more than 2000 species across the world. These fleas get feed from the warm blooded bodies by sucking the blood. Here are common fleas that you can often saw in your surroundings:

Cat Flea

The cat fleas are often unable to determine whether a host is suitable until it has been bitten. If the host seems unsuitable then cat flea leaves it soon. Cat fleas are usually 3 mm long wingless ticks, flattened from side to side with long legs for jump.

Dog Flea

Dog Flea lives on the blood of dogs and cats, and also sometimes bites humans. It is a vector of the Dog tapeworm, Dipylidium caninum that can also affect humans. The adult dog flea is of black color although appear reddish black after a blood meal. It can grow up to 1 to 4 mm long.

Bird Flea

Bird fleas can found in enormously numbers in hen houses, breeders, and other similar environments. Adult fleas are generally brownish in color which can go up to 1/32” – 5/16” long.

Human Fleas

Most of the peoples might tell you that human doesn’t get fleas. But it is not true as there are species exists of human fleas. These fleas infest in the hairy area like head, under arms and other for easily hiding. They live quietly on humans and get the blood as feed. But luckily, human fleas are not common anymore because of improvements in hygiene and cleaning methods.

Sand Fleas

These are little punk in the sand that often bites on your ankle while you at the beach. When you lie down on the ground then they can bite the part of the body close to the ground. They have appearance like very tiny shrimp creatures.

Flea Species

Here we have the commonly seen flea species that you can notice in your surroundings. Fleas have more than two thousand species exist almost in every region of world.

  • Cat flea
  • Dog flea
  • Human flea
  • Chigoe flea
  • Oriental rat flea
  • Dipylidium Caninum
  • Ceratophyllus gallinae
  • Yersinia pestis
  • Echidnophaga Gallinacea
  • Rickettsia Felis
  • Nosopsyllus Fasciatus
  • Spilopsyllus Cuniculi
  • Hedgehog flea
  • Badger flea
  • Bythotrephes Longimanus

Flea Facts

  • A female flea can lay up to 50 eggs per day.
  • Fleas have Olympic-caliber jumping skills.
  • Fleas can live for long time without eating.
  • Your pets can get allergy from the flea bites.
  • Fleas can spread diseases in humans.
  • Fleas can pull more weight than their body.
  • A flea can jump 30 thousand times without stopping.
  • Fleas don’t have ears and they are virtually blind.
  • The average flea is between 1 to 3 mm long.
  • Flea pupae can live up to one year in homes.
  • A flea life cycle can be short as 14 days to 12 months.
  • In almost every species of flea, females are larger than male.
  • Sand fleas are only active at dawn and dusk.

What do fleas eat?

Flea larvae eat adult flea feces and conspecific eggs. The larvae need both components to complete the nutritional requirement. They can’t survive by consuming only eggs or flea feces. All flea larvae feed both foods to survive. The primary source of the food for all adult fleas is fresh blood.

They can still be technically classified as hematophagous obligate parasites. Both male and female adults produce fecal blood. The excreta contain the same amount of protein, regardless of gender. However, female fleas produce good quantity feces.

Flea

How to get rid of fleas?

The fleas are harmful for your pets and also, for the human being. Here are the few solution to control and completely get rid from the fleas.

Vacuuming

If you a strong vacuum cleaner then you can use it to bring out the fleas from the carpet, and any cracks easily.

Flea Sprays

Flea sprays can be used on both pets and furniture to keep away fleas. These sprays are able to kill almost every type of fleas including their eggs.

Dish soap

The home made flea killer can prepare by using dish soap and some water. Place it in the room where fleas are more active. The viscous solution of water and dish soap will trap the fleas. You have to change the solution every day.

Salt

Salt is the great natural flea home remedy when accompanied by vacuuming. It will act as the dehydration agent and help in getting rid of adult fleas.

Do Flea Bites on the human?

There is a rare species of flea that prefer the human body as host. Mostly flea species prefer pets as their hosts for feed. However, the flea might bite humans. Sometimes it happened without turning human into hosts. It can causes allergic reaction of flea bite on the human body.

  • Human flea
  • Chigoe flea
  • Oriental rat flea
  • Cat flea

These are the few species of flea which can bite humans.

What do Fleas look like?

Fleas come in various different sizes. Generally, the average size of the fleas is about 2.5 mm. They are dark in color, usually found in the red or brown. They might appear black from some distance. They are tiny as they can misunderstand with the fleck of dirt until they jump away. Fleas are wingless, but have the powerful legs that allow them to jump up to 8 inch vertically from the ground.

Flea life cycle

The life cycle of the fleas are divided into four stages; i.e. egg, larvae, pupa and adult. The total life cycle will take a couple weeks to many months anywhere as it depends on the environmental temperature and humidity levels. The fleas required temperature from 70 – 85 Fahrenheit and 70% humidity.

Fleas Habitat: Where do fleas live?

Adults fleas are obligate blood feeders only 5% of the flea population will be on an animal at any one time. They don’t leave the surrounding of their hosts. The flea population can be found where the host species spend their most of time. The areas will found generally warm, humid and shady as the flea larvae don’t come out in the light. So, they prefer to live in the crack, under the carpet and other hidden places.

Fleas Reproduction

A female flea can lay approx. 1500 eggs in their lifespan. After mating with male fleas, female fleas able to deposit viable eggs and their output quadruples. Females need to successfully mate with number of male partners to reach full fertility. The female fleas who mate more than once can lay nine times more fertile eggs than once-mated females.

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