What is the Life Cycle of Fleas and How to Break it
What is the Life Cycle of Fleas. There’s nothing as embarrassing as spotting a pest take an early morning jog across the sleeve of your shirt in the middle of a corporate presentation. You could wish it away all you want but the solution will always be to get rid of its source. No one really cares about fleas until they start becoming a problem. If you have a pet, taking measures to keep your companion free of infestation is a priority. Understand all there is to a flea’s existence may be all that’s needed.in keeping them away.
The life cycle of fleas includes four phases; egg, larva, pupa and adult. Understanding what goes on in each stage may help you determine which steps to take in preventing and getting rid of them in case of an infestation.
The Life Cycle of Fleas
1. The Egg Stage
Did you know that a flea can lay up to 40 eggs per day? Better still, did you know that only a blood fed adult female flea can produce eggs? This gives you all the more reason to get rid of an infestation as soon as you spot these tiny nuisances. However, the life cycle of fleas begins when eggs are laid by an adult flea. The Egg of a flea is too small to be noticed by the naked eye. It is the size of a grain of sand. These eggs are laid in your pet’s fur in multiple bunches and left to mature to the second stage of life. Some of these eggs fall off so your pet unknowingly distributes the eggs around your home. This makes the infestation a nightmare. The 40 eggs laid in a day represent half the population of fleas in your home.
It takes 2 days to two weeks for the eggs to hatch if the environmental conditions are favorable. The colder the temperatures, the longer they’ll take to hatch. After hatching. The fleas enter the larvae stage.
2. The Flea Larvae Stage
Did you know that fleas are totally blind after hatching? It is because of this that they avoid light as much as possible. These pesky pests survive on flea poop, which basically is pre digested blood. They also feed on dead skin and pet fur until they are ready for the world.
In the larvae stage, fleas are white in color and are about a quarter inch long. They do not even have legs at this stage and constitute to about 35% of the population in an infested home. If the conditions are favorable, flea larvae will actively spin cocoons after 5-20 days which gets them to the next stage of life known as the pupae or cocoon stage.
3. The Pupal Stage
This is the last stage that fleas have to go through before becoming adults. The fleas remain well concealed in the cocoons for days and weeks before they break out the adult fleas. If the weather is too cold, the cocoon will hold in the flea for even months until it is ready. There are some instances whereby fleas are known to stay in their cocoons for years.
Cocoons have a sticky layer that covers them. This layer attaches them to surfaces for the protection of the developing fleas. This is what attaches them to your carpet, wall paper, upholstery and even bedding. Light vacuuming of these areas will not get rid of these cocoons hence the need to apply tougher solutions. This cocoon also protects the fleas from chemicals which explains why you need to repeat the extermination procedure until there’s no signs of fleas in your home. When the environment is favorable, the adult flea breaks free and becomes independent.
4. The Adult Flea
An adult flea only breaks free from a cocoon when signs of a potential host are detected. This is sensed via vibrations, body heat and increased levels of carbon dioxide whenever a human or a pet walks by. The flea will then be sure of survival as they are available hosts to feed on. After their first feed, female fleas are ready to lay eggs within 48 hours. Although this pests are best known for their jumping nature, they actually stay stationary after breaking free from a cocoon right until they latch and feed on their hosts.
If you notice the presence of fleas in your home, it is best to take action immediately. These little guys are capable of disturbing the peace in your home and the health of its residents. There are several ways of eliminating fleas, so seek advice. If the situation is beyond your control, there’s no shame in seeking professional help. The sooner you contain and eliminate the infestation, the better.