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If you were born and raised in Arkansas, you know full well that April showers don’t just bring May flowers. After a southern rainstorm, you know what to expect. Mosquitos, fleas, and ticks, oh my! Today’s blog focuses on the flea; a tiny relentless pest that when viewed far away is a slight annoyance. But take a closer look with us to see how exactly these pests have made their mark in history and why they are making a comeback in 2016.

What is a flea?

The flea is a wingless creature red-brown in color. They can jump approximately 30x their own height. But the major gross factor comes from their mouths. Their mouths are specially designed to impale skin, insert their saliva (which prevents blood coagulation), and finally tap in the blood stream. They are flat, tiny creatures with hard bodies that allow easy, quick movements through clothing, fur, or materials found in the home like carpet and upholstery.

When did the flea make an appearance?

They are closely associated with most plagues in history so knowledge of the flea goes back to the 14th century with the Black Death, costing 50 million people their lives. Fast forward to 2015, and infection has made a comeback at Yosemite National Park with a group of tourists bitten by fleas. Vets across the country are reporting a huge increase in flea infestations in dogs, in particular.

Why are fleas making a comeback?

 Two things are to blame for the rise of the flea in the past couple years: the rain and the tolerance of fleas to flea control medications. As with most pests, fleas thrive in humid conditions. They are able to infest an area so quickly due to the female flea’s ability to lay up to 30 eggs daily. With warmer temps and muggier conditions, more fleas are able to survive the larva stage and go on a search for blood. The second issue is the flea’s ability to reject the old formulas of flea control medication. Over time, they have adapted immunity.

Because of this, Command changes up their formula constantly to ensure no pests can build up a resistance. Learn more about our flea control in Little Rock and Springdale, AR – give us a call if you have any questions about how you can protect yourself and your pets from this pest that is more than just an annoyance.

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