Fun flea facts

Fleas are really bizarre creatures. Have a look at these fun facts about fleas:

  • Fleas can pull 160,000 times their own weight, which is the same as you pulling 2,679 double-deckerbuses.
  • A flea can jump 30,000 times without stopping.
  • Fleas don't have ears and are virtually blind.
  • The average flea is between2mm and 3mm long and weighs about 0.03g.
  • The world's biggest flea is the beaver flea, which is about 11mm.
  • Fleas reverse direction with every jump.
  • Flea larvae don't like the light so they move away from it, deep into carpets, cracks in flooring or any nook or cranny.
  • When a flea jumps, it accelerates 50 times faster than a space shuttle.
  • Fleas can lay up to 1,500 eggs in their lifetime.
  • Flea brides and grooms (dressed, but dead) were popular collector's items in the 1920s.
  • Flea pupae can live for up to one year in homes.
  • Fleas can jump over 150 times their own size (approximately 30cm high) - which is like you jumping the length of a football field.
  • A flea's life cycle can be as short as 14 days or up to 12 months.
  • 95% of flea eggs, larvae and pupae live in beds, rugs, carpets and sofas – not on your pet.
  • Just one flea can become 1,000 on your pet and in your home in only 21 days.
  • Flea circuses originated in England in the 16th century.
  • One of Britain's oldest games can trace its origins to the flea. In approximately 15 different European languages, the word 'tiddlywinks' translates as 'the game of the flea'.
  • In nearly all species, the female is larger than the male.
  • The collective name for a group of fleas is a swarm.
  • Sand fleas are only active at dawn and dusk.
  • Fleas can be frozen for up to a year and then revive themselves.

(Health24, March 2011)

Source: Information supplied by Merial. Visit frontlineplus.co.za for more information.

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