All photographs copyright (2003-2013) by Kris H. Light

<strong>Snow Fleas</strong>
<em>Hypogastrura nivicola</em> 
Great Smoky Mountains NP, TN
February 21, 2010

I was hiking on a snow-covered trail when I noticed thousands of tiny black specks on the surface of the snow. When I got closer to inspect...
Snow Fleas
Hypogastrura nivicola
Great Smoky Mountains NP, TN
February 21, 2010

I was hiking on a snow-covered trail when I noticed thousands of tiny black specks on the surface of the snow. When I got closer to inspect them I was surprised to see them jumping. I knew immediately that they were Snow Fleas, a type of springtail. Don't worry, they aren't the biting kind of "flea"! These tiny critters only eat decaying organic matter as well as fungi, algae, pollen, bacteria, roundworms, and rotifers.
I picked a bad time to leave my macro lens behind that day! :(

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