sucking louse

sucking louse
LOUSE (n. 1a)

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Any of more than 400 species (suborder Anoplura, order Phthiraptera) of small, wingless, flat ectoparasitic insects found worldwide.

They have piercing and sucking mouthparts for extracting their food of mammals' blood and tissue fluids. The nymphs mature after several molts. Species are host-specific: Pediculus infests humans (see human louse), whereas other sucking lice (genera Haematopinus and Linognathus) attack domestic animals, such as hogs, cattle, horses, and dogs.

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      any of some 500 species of small, wingless, flat lice (order Phthiraptera) that have piercing and sucking mouthparts and live on blood and tissue fluids of mammals as an ectoparasite (external parasite). The adult sucking louse, or true louse, glues her eggs, or nits, to the host's hair. The young, which resemble adults when they hatch, become sexually mature after several molts. The sucking louse ranges in colour from whitish to yellow and shows distinct host specificity. The presence of related lice on related groups of hosts may evidence parallel evolution of parasites and hosts.

      The sucking louse Pediculus humanus (human louse) infests humans wherever hygienic practices are not maintained. In heavy infestations this insect, which is known as the human louse (q.v.), may cause serious skin irritations. Far more serious is its role as a vector of diseases such as typhus, relapsing fever, and trench fever. The pubic louse (q.v.) is found in the hair of the pubic region and occasionally the armpits, the eyebrows, and the beard.

      The more important sucking lice that attack domestic animals belong to the genera Haematopinus and Linognathuse.g., the hog louse, H. suis; the short-nosed cattle louse, H. eurysternus; the horse louse, H. asini; the long-nosed cattle louse, L. vituli; and the dog louse, L. setosus.

      There are several effective insecticides for louse control. During severe outbreaks, insecticidal treatments and heat sterilization are used to delouse clothing. Chemical dips or sprays are used on infested domestic animals. Predatory mites also help to control lice populations.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • sucking louse — n any of an order (Anoplura) of wingless insects comprising the true lice with mouthparts adapted for sucking body fluids * * * any member of the order Anoplura …   Medical dictionary

  • sucking louse — n. LOUSE (n. 1a) …   English World dictionary

  • sucking louse — noun wingless usually flattened bloodsucking insect parasitic on warm blooded animals • Syn: ↑louse • Derivationally related forms: ↑lousy (for: ↑louse) • Hypernyms: ↑insect …   Useful english dictionary

  • Sucking louse — Taxobox name = Anoplura image caption = Pediculus humanus regnum = Animalia phylum = Arthropoda classis = Insecta ordo = Phthiraptera subordo = Anoplura subdivision ranks = Families subdivision = Echinophthiriidae (seal lice) Enderleinellidae… …   Wikipedia

  • sucking louse — suck•ing louse n. ent louse 1) • Etymology: 1905–10 …   From formal English to slang

  • sucking louse — noun Date: circa 1907 any of an order (Anoplura) of wingless insects comprising the true lice with mouthparts adapted to sucking body fluids …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • sucking louse. — See under louse (def. 1). [1905 10] * * * …   Universalium

  • sucking louse. — See under louse (def. 1). [1905 10] …   Useful english dictionary

  • louse — n. /lows/; v. /lows, lowz/, n., pl. lice /luys/ for 1 3, louses for 4, v., loused, lousing. n. 1. any small, wingless insect of the order Anoplura (sucking louse), parasitic on humans and other mammals and having mouthparts adapted for sucking,… …   Universalium

  • Louse — Lice redirects here. For the infection, see Pediculosis. For the district of Diyarbakır Province in Turkey, see Lice, Turkey. For other uses, see Louse (disambiguation). Phthiraptera …   Wikipedia

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