There are four stages to a flea’s life cycle - egg, larva, pupa and adult. Each stage of the life cycle can vary in time, depending on the specie and the environment that the lifecycle is taking place in.
Flea Life Cycle span - During the Egg stage of the life cycle, the Female Adult flea will lay eggs (up to 45 a day) which can drop on to a host (perhaps a pet) or into nearby carpet, furniture or bedding. If the Adult flea remains on the host and is moved around, the eggs could be widely spread around the home or yard. Between two and ten days after the eggs have been deposited, larvae will hatch.
During the Larval stage of the life cycle, larvae (small worm-like creatures) will pierce through the egg and crawl to an area where they can feed. Larvae can grow up to a quarter of an inch long during this life cycle stage. They feed off different types of organic material, but predominantly on faecal matter left by Adult Fleas. There are three stages within the Larval stage where the larvae feed, grow and eventually develop a cocoon casing (made up of debris from fibres, hairs or carpet) where they then undergo the Pupa stage. Flea larvae like a dark and warm area to hide and develop. Temperatures of around 85 degrees Fahrenheit and a high humidity are most favourable for them to progress through this part of their lifecycle.
The Life Cycle of a Flea
During the Pupa stage of the life cycle, the larvae develop in to an adult flea within the casing. This stage can take from anywhere between a number of days up to a practically a year! The adult Flea will break out of the cocoon when the surrounding environment is suitable. High humidity, warm temperatures, carbon dioxide (perhaps from a hosts’ breath) and vibrations (of a potential host) all act as incentive tools to coax the flea out to adulthood.
Once Adult fleas are out, they immediately search for an host to feed on. Fleas are parasites that feed on the blood of their host, so any nearby house pet or human makes a tasty meal. The lifecycle then repeats itself (unless you prevent it) once the female adult flea has fed. The whole process can be as quick as two weeks or as slow as up to a year, depending on several factors, so it is important in flea control to ensure that you are exterminating the flea during every stage of its life cycle.
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