Pest Control Specialist

Pest Profiles


Fleas


  • Coackroaches

    PROFILE

    Fleas are parasites of warm blooded animals, particularly dogs and cats. With the help of rodents, fleas were responsible for the deaths of 25,000,000 Europeans from Bubonic Plague.

BIOLOGY

Although there are over 2,000 species of flea the most common is the cat flea. Despite its name, it is adaptable and is found living on both cats and dogs. Occasionally they bite humans when desperate for blood meal to provide protein for egg production.


Several hundred eggs are laid during a females lifetime. Small, white and smooth, the eggs freely drop off to cause infestation in areas frequented by the host (eg. cat, dog, or other warm blooded animal).


White, legless larvae hatch and feed on food debris, skin scales and the blood-rich faeces of the adult fleas. Approximately two weeks later the larvae spin a silken cocoon, pupate and await the vibrations that signify the passing of a prospective host. This may explain why a multitude of fleas appear immediately upon entering a home that has been undisturbed for a period of a week or more. Infant fleas can remain in a state of hibernation for up to a year and still survive.


Adult fleas have flattened bodies which enables them to move easily through a dense coat of hair or fur. Each of the six legs has a pair of claws at the tip to enable them to remain attached regardless of of the host scratching. The hind legs are well developed for jumping onto a passing host.


A flea population builds up rapidly. With female fleas laying hundreds of eggs, most of which proceed through the larval and pupal stages to adult, and with a spring and early summer life cycle as short as 21 days, a plague of fleas is almost a yearly occurrence.


SPECIES

There are two major species of fleas in Australia. They are the Cat Flea and the Dog Flea.


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