Fleas are very small (1/16 to 1/8-inch) wingless insects that have mouth parts built for piercing skin and sucking blood. Considered an external parasite, fleas live off of the blood they suck from mammals and birds.
Fleas are usually redish-nrown and have long legs. The rear legs are used for jumping and they can jumps high as 13 inches vertically.
The flea body is hard, polished, and covered with many hairs and short spines which also assist its movements on the host. Their bodies are laterally compressed, permitting easy movement through the hairs or feathers on the host’s body. The flea body is also very tough and can withstand great pressure. Trying to squish a flea between your fingers will usually not kill it.
Female fleas lay white oval-shaped eggs in batches of 20 and will hatch in 2-14 days. The eggs can easily roll off the host and will develop in the area where the host sleeps. Larvae become pupae and an adult fleas emerge from the pupae stage. Most fleas live 2-3 months.
Fleas are a nuisance to their hosts, causing an itching sensation which in turn may result in the host attempting to remove the pest by biting, pecking, and scratching. The bites can cause a raised itchy spots which can appear in a cluster or lines of two bites. Fleas also transmit diseases to humans and other animals.
If you have discovered a flea infestation on a pet, chances are you have fleas around the house too. Call Hart’s Extermination for a safe plan of attack so that you don’t end up hurting yourself or your animals.