Fleas have gained their reputation as a significant pest due to their biting of people usually around the ankle and lower leg. They are as comfortable in a well-carpeted office as they are in a warm comfortable residential home. The bite can stay irritated for many days due to the injection of saliva at the bite site which acts as an anticoagulant and keeps the wound weeping.
Fleas have been linked to one of mankind's worst epidemics the Black Plaque killing millions of people during the middle ages and at the start of the 20th century. The Plaque was by caused fleas transferring a bacterium Yersenia pestis from rats to humans. There are four main fleas types with the cat flea the most common.
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Cat Fleas (Ctenocephalides felis)
Fleas in the carpet, every homeowner's nightmare. When the conditions are right it can seem as if there is a plaque of fleas. Sitting dormant in a carpet for months as a pupate when the temperatures rise and they sense a suitable host suddenly they appear. Fleas feed on the blood obtained from the host following a bite, in humans usually around the ankle and with pets under the arms and in the groin area where they can be warm and hidden from sight. A female flea lays up to 300 eggs. The larvae feed on protein such as dried blood and skin scales. Adult fleas are capable of transmitting parasites and diseases, the saliva injected when they feed (contains anticoagulant and anaesthetic) reacts with some people and may result in severe reactions. The anticoagulant enables diseases and parasites to enter the body through the open wound of the bite. Treatment of the carpet is not enough if the property has a resident cat or pet. Pets must have flea treatment at the same time as any carpet/flooring treat or re-infestation will be guaranteed.