Currently viewing the category: "Louse"

Tick tock
Location: US, California, Santa Monica
July 26, 2011 3:14 pm
Did I ever think I would be writing an email to someone called the Bugman. No. lol. But now I am glad I found you.
Dear Sir,
I have what looks like a tick? Photos to follow.
Location: Santa Monica, California. Douglas Park just off Whilshire Blvd.
Tues July 26th, 12pm, 70 degrees.
Douglas park is a few acres big, tons of people moving about. Veterinarian hospital next door to it (matter?) Has three duck ponds. The ponds are closed off for renovation. No water in the ponds just dug up and moved earth for now. Hey maybe it has something to do with the bugs? idunno
We sat on a bench for about 5-8mins in the park. NO trees hanging over head so the bugs came from bottom to top. My counterpart was covered in mite sized tick looking bugs. Approximately 100 to 150. I had only a few on my shoes. She had a long pair of cloth stretchy pants that touched the ground. So they must have climbed her cloth and they had trouble on my sneakers. She was covered, I was not. We sat side by side.
They were inside her pants and outside. I had to beg her not to get naked at the park.
I brushed them off and noticed they seemed to be getting squashed, so I would say soft body insects.
I told her they were aphids to calm her down. But in my mind I was freaking out. Covered, covered, covered. They only made it to her lower body.
When we got back to the house I set her clothes in the sun and they all vacated into the seams and darker areas of her clothes. They hated the sun? I also noticed that they would raise there lower body into the air and try to barrow into my shoe. So I figured it was a tick?
I suppose they came from the park. Do we need to notify anyone? Can you help ID these suckers?
Signature: what does this mean? Please don’t worry about signing it?


Please don’t shoot the messenger.  You’ve got Lice.  While this is most certainly a Louse, and we are linking to images of Human Lice on BugGuide, we do not have the necessary skills to determine what species of Louse this is, however, we have a strong suspicion it is a Human Louse.  BugGuide indicates that Sucking Lice in the family Anaplura which includes the Human Louse are:  “Parasites of mammals. Most species are restricted to one or a few hosts” and that they are characterized by being “Wingless, flat-bodied. Resemble chewing lice but the head is narrower than the thorax. Mouthparts are fitted for piercing skin and sucking blood.”  It is possible that the person who sat on, or slept on the park bench prior to your arrival had poor hygiene habits, perhaps from a lack of bathing, and the Lice remained behind.  If there is a high indigent population frequenting the park, it is highly likely that would be the source of the Lice infestation.  We haven’t tagged anything as Worst Bug Story Ever in quite some time, but we think your experience warrants tagging in that category.  We would strongly recommend seeking professional attention to prevent any spread of this infestation to family and friends.



Louse, probably Human Louse

So yes,  I was informed yesterday that they are lice. Gross.  Lice that crawled up from the ground.  Interestingly,  if they were on the bench we were sitting on, they would have gotten on my shorts.  But they only got on my shoes and her shoes and pants pants.  They for sure climbed up from the ground not the bench in this case.
So it is day two.  After having the bug ID last night, I went and bought lice shampoo.  We both used it.  But, neither of us have yet had an itch yet.  So I am freaking out waiting to itch.  I have searched her high and low.  Ans myself. nothing so far.  No itching just yet.
I guess it would be safe to say if nothing serious happens after 7 days I am in the clear?
But this is only part way into day two.  So I am trying to aggressively dodge this bullet and not wait.
If we get lice I will let you know.  I am so disappointed.  So bizarre to.

Hi Antony,
You are lucky you began treatment immediately.  Please keep us posted.

Dodging the Lice bullet
July 29, 2011
Well I think it is safe to say that we dodged the bullet here!
After my GF being cover, truly infested with lice, over 150 lice crawling all over her shoes and pants.  Well nothing made it higher.  I suppose most people find out they have lice after the fact.  We had the complete opposite.  We visually discovered it before they made it to the top.  I have never heard of a case like this.  Neither one of us have been itchy or have any bites, nit or egg looking particle in the hair, or anything and the discovery of adult lice swarming the lower body happened on Tues am. It is like a miracle.
I spoke to the ground crew at Douglass park in Santa Monica.  He mentioned there are so many bums sleeping around the park that one of them must have had clothes or items on the ground under that bench.  He had seen someone sleeping near the bench earlier that day.  We were in the wrong place at the wrong time. It is sad to because so many kids play there and parents and folks relax there, that to have bums laying around the park covered in lice is a terrible mix.   I will be forever scarred from the visual of 150-200 lice swarming the pant legs of my hysteric GF.  Me telling her they are aphids though I thought they were ticks.  Turns out they were lice…lol.
Happened Tues and it is Fri.  I think it is safe to say we made it?  We dodged 200 lice.  Go figure?  Thanks for your help, I have researched lice and seen way to many lice pictures on the internet that if I ever encounter this again I will not be as freaked out.
Thanks again,



Parasites (2nd try)
October 17, 2010
I took away some pics but there are deep red ones that were skinny long types too. Dr’s don’t know what the are but larva was on hair & follicles thoughout body burrwing in skin as if it was threaded under now but adults only on scalp (they didn’t believe me that’s why it was allowed to mature) used lice treatment but didn’t work so if you could give me any info I would desperately appreciate it! When i first thought it was a parasite started last year June yet noticed first symptoms of being sick a couple of years back. Had been in northern NJ, Penn at Lake 26 days before first skin eruption but  I live in northern CA-Sonoma County, laundry is on back deck under half roof open to redwood tree & a wild raccoon & squrriel was seen on clothes before, I also held a baby snake not knowing it’s gut was busted open and only used hand sanitizer @ time. Mexico over the Texas border plus Cabo San Lucus, Az desert were I was bit standing by a Yucca plant on foot leaving 3 puncture marks & Taos high desert where I fed Mag Pies & other birds on the same table we would sit at and have coffee plus took off the snow to make homemade icream) & breakfast (I’m careful today about germs & bugs micro world and sanitation), Hawaii caves and Tahiti the Atolls with wild chickens + Moorea  thatched roof bungalow all were I have been before getting sick but the bugs are the only tangible things fir the docs to go on as I have many skin blisters where it felt on fire, things in nostrils & too many symptoms I don’t think you would be interested in but I’m sorry I can’t be of more help in the identity process as I don’t know where I got them plus there are not pics but there were ones with crossed thatched wings    Long and narrow all bug range from pinhead to about 3mm. Thank you for you time-Chante’

Human Lice we believe

Dear Chante’,
We sympathize with your situation, and many of the things you have included in your email are not related to the problem of the creatures depicted in your photographs.  They appear to our unschooled eyes to be Human Lice, , but in matters that require a medical diagnosis, we always urge the person to seek professional medical attention.  You can show the professionals the images on BugGuide for comparison.

Human Lice we believe

Thank you again, I will show my Dr. your website.
Sincerely, Chante’

Whats that big please?
Hello, i found this bug on my fish, can anyone tell me what is it? thanx and is it harmful to my whole tank now? i found it on my sick fish that has black spots all over it, then today i saw this bug, so i quarantined the fish and removed this bug to a cup alone for further investigation, please help me with my questions if you can, thank you
Adel M. Ammari

Hi Adel,
This is a Fish Louse, Argulus species. We are posting your letter with a link to a site called the FishDoc, The Home of Fish Health, that talks about treatment. You should treat immediately to avoid an infestation.

This bug was found on an item of clothing (right before putting it on). It had somehow burrowed within the clothing material. Your help is much appreciated.

Hi Charlie,
Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but you have a Human Louse, probably Pediculus humanus. Hogue has something to say about this bane to humankind. “Like the bedbug, this menace to human beings is not as prevalent today as in the past because of improved public and personal hygiene. Yet it still pops up here and there, most often among school children and indigents, and it remains the lone true companion of the hobo. This is a sucking louse found only on humans, to whom it causes much discomfort in exchange for its meal of blood. Two forms are known: the head louse infests the hair of the scalp, and the body louse lives in clothing near the body surface. Both are small (1/16 to 3/16 in.) and oval, with pointed legs. Unfed individuals are flat and yellowish to medium brown in color; after injesting blood they are swollen and show a dark clot of blood in the abdomen. Bites of the Human Louse cause a slight local reaction accompanied by itching. … In the vernacular, the Human Louse is known as the ‘Cootie.’ Its eggs, which are firmly attached to the hairs of the head and body, are the familiar ‘nits.'”