Do you have springtails or fleas? Springtails are often confused with fleas because of the way that they hop around. Unlike fleas, springtails do not bite. Springtails are easily crushed while fleas have a hard body.Springtails are another insect that work their way in through small cracks in homes. Wet weather creates ideal conditions for springtails. You can see them in every season – winter, spring, summer and fall.
Identifying the Springtail
Springtails have a round “humpbacked” body, no wings, and a distinctive head with long antennae. They get their name from a forked appendage attached to the end of the abdomen, which can be bent under the body and, when released, helps the insect to “spring” forward, much like a flea.
Size: Tiny 1/32 to 1/8 of an inch long
Color: white, gray, yellow, orange, metallic green, lavender to red with some having a pattern.
Activity/Behavior: Springtails are typically associated with leaf litter, mulch, firewood, landscape timbers, potted plants, railroad ties, etc. They need a moisture source. Springtails are most active in the afternoon or early evening.
Where They Live: Springtails can be found in sinks and basins, floor drains, around sweating pipes, in most basements or crawlspaces, on moldy furniture, and in the soil of potted plants. These insects feed on decaying organic matter, algae, and fungi. They are also attracted to light.
Outside, their population can reach up to 100,000 individuals per cubic meter of soil. They live in soil, leaf mold, under bark, decaying logs, on surface pools, in organic mulch. Springtails feed on algae, fungi, decaying vegetable matter, plant roots, young plant leaves or germinating seeds. They are great in compost piles.
How to prevent Springtails from invading your home
- Avoid excessive layers of mulch around the foundation.
- Remove leaf or plant litter from around the foundation.
- Reduce irrigation frequency to lawn.
- Prune shrubbery back off house.
- Use fan or dehumidifier in damp locations inside the house.
Call Suburban Exterminating if you’ve got a springtail or flea problem. We can help with all of your pest issues! Call (631) 864-6900 | (516) 864-6900 | (631) 287-6900. You can also contact us here.
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