A total of 9,936 fleas, representing 27 species, have been processed for study and identified. They were associated with 2,011 small mammals, representing 38 species, collected throughout Morocco from October 12, 1969 to July 20, 1970 by personnel of the Smithsonian Institution. Two species, Synosternus cleopatrae pyramidis (Rothschild and Xenopsylla ramesis (Rothschild), comprised 68 percent of the fleas collected. Two subspecies are described: Ctenophthalmus andorrensis opistolatus, ssp. n. and Ctenophthalmus russulae tangerensis, ssp. n.. There are three ecological subdivisions of Morocco: the coast and coastal plains, the Atlas Mountains, and the pre-saharan desert. Even though there is some overlap, the flea fauna of each subdivision is distinctive. Human plague has occurred most frequently in the coast and coastal plains region where species of Xenopsylla and Nosopsyllus are most abundant. The flea fauna is most diversified in the presaharan region, but the threat of human plague in this region is not great, because of the sparse human population.
College and Department
Plant and Wildlife Sciences
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Hastriter, Michael W., "Fleas (Siphonaptera) associated with small mammals of Morocco their distribution and host-specificity" (1972). Theses and Dissertations. 7946.
Fleas, Morocco; Mammals, Morocco