Fleas are small wingless but agile insects who live by consuming the blood of their hosts. They are external parasites who look for mammals and birds to survive.
FLEA LIFE CYCLE
Adult fleas grown to about 3mm long and usually brown to dark in colouring. They can flatten their bodies sideways enables fleas to crawl or burrow through the fur or feathers of their hosts hanging on by their strong back claws designed to grasp onto their hosts.
Flea mouths have been adapted to pierce skin and sucking blood and as they lack wings they can jump 50 times their actual body length 18 cm vertically and 33 cm horizontally.
Flea bodies are covered with hard plates known as scierites, which are covered with a multitude of hairs and short spines, directed backwards to assist its movement on the host.
Pet owners in Queensland BEWARE
Fleas love it when its warm, both temperature wise and for living conditions but pet owners should be aware of the risks associated with pets in these hot climates.
The fleas can breed about just everywhere: carpets, rugs, throws, sofas, lounges, inside and outside the home. They will also find their way into furnishings, cracks in the floorboards and upholstered furniture.
Flea eggs and larvae can run rampant; the larvae feed not only on mature adult faeces, which contain dried blood, they also eat organic matter especially in bedding and carpets.
Pets should be regularly groomed.
By grooming and regularly maintaining them especially if they are playing and walking in grasses a suggestion is that you comb the pet with a flea comb. Scratching or biting behaviour by pets is often a hint that they have fleas, and need treatment asap.
A rule of thumb is that fleas can be carried by just about any hairy animal. Because fleas are parasitic, they can leave uncomfortable itches or rashes on skin particularly worrying when the home owner has small children.
Flea bites and what happens if left undisturbed
Flea bites cause a slightly raised swollen itchy red spot to form with a single puncture point at the centre like a mosquito bite surrounded by reddened haloes.
Fleas carry viruses and bacterial diseases, even bubonic plague as well as transmitting host of diseases and even tapeworms.
Undisturbed and without a blood meal, fleas can live for more than 100 days and on average live between two and three months.
The reason fleas are not a more common problem for humans is due to our lack of body hair.
Call Bob 0407 065 413 for end of lease or general pest control 7 days a week.