Encyclopedia of Parasitology

2016 Edition
| Editors: Heinz Mehlhorn

Xenopsylla cheopis

  • Heinz Mehlhorn
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-43978-4_3437


Greek: xenos = foreign, psylla = flea, cheops = Egyptian pharaoh.

General Information

Tropical rat flea (described by  Rothschildt), vector of the agent of the plague (Yersinia pestis). This flea, which has no ctenidia at the head or notum, reaches a length of 1.5–2 mm and is now found worldwide (Figs. 1 and 2). Other Xenopsylla spp. are X. braziliensis (African rat flea, first described in Brazil, but important in Africa and India) and X. asiatica (syn. X. astia) found in Sri Lanka. General development see  Fleas.
Xenopsylla cheopis, Fig. 1

LM of an adult female of Xenopsylla cheopis

Xenopsylla cheopis, Fig. 2

Light micrographs of fleas. (a) Xenopyslla cheopis; (b) Megabothris turbidus; (c) Leptopsylla segnis; (d, e) Ctenophthalmus agyrtes. AT, antenna; AU, eye (ommatidium); MK, male copulatory system; PK, ctenidia of the pronotum; RC, receptaculum seminis; S, sense bristle; WZ, ctenidia at lateral sides of the head (= genal ctenidia)

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institut für Zoomorphologie, Zellbiologie und ParasitologieHeinrich-Heine-UniversitätDüsseldorfGermany