Fast Facts for Kids
Lice Facts for Kids

Lice Facts for Kids

  • Common Name: Lice
  • Phylum: Arthropoda
  • Class: Insecta
  • Parvorder: Phthiraptera
  • Total Species: ~5,000
  • Distribution: Worldwide (Except Antarctic)
  • First Appeared: ~6 million years ago

13 Lice Facts For Kids

  1. Lice is the common name for a large group of wingless parasitic insects in the Phthiraptera parvorder.
  2. It is not easy to identify lice due to their small size, but they look like a poppyseed and have a dark color.
  3. Fossil evidence suggests lice were around at least during the Paleogene period (23 to 66 million years ago).
  4. Lice can be hematophagous (blood only) or carnivorous (meat only).
  5. Lice that are hematophagous are known as sucking lice, which feed on their hosts bodily fluids.
  6. Lice that are carnivorous are known as chewing lice, which feed on their hosts skin, hair, and/or feathers.
  7. An example of a sucking lice species is the Antarctophthirus microchir whose primary host is the sea lion.
  8. An example of a chewing lice species is Ricinus vaderi whose primary host is the calandra lark.
  9. Each louse species prefers a specific warm-blooded host, but some species can feed off multiple hosts.
  10. There are three lice species whose primary host is humans, the head louse (Pediculus humanus capitis), the body louse (Pediculus humanus humanus), and the pubic louse (Pthirus pubis).
  11. Lice are holoparasites (obligate parasites) and cannot reproduce without access to their hosts.
  12. There are around 5,000 lice species living worldwide.
  13. The body length range for all lice species is between 0.02 and 2 inches.

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Lice Pictures

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the below images will be helpful for your research on lice. Below are three pictures of various lice species. These pictures should help you better understand the different types of lice found around the world.

The Head Louse (Pediculus Humanus Capitis)

A picture of the head louse (pediculus humanus capitis).

Microscopic Photo of a Head Louse

A microscopic photo of a head louse.

Lice in Human Hair

A picture of lice in human hair.

Lice Resources

We hope you found the above lice facts, information, data, and pictures both fun and educational. You can continue to research lice using one of the below additional resources. They were chosen for their credibility and accuracy; you can trust their information when it comes to lice. Thank you for choosing Fast Facts for Kids.