Other Parasites

Human Skin Parasites

There are websites that claim that two groups of arthropods, Collembola (springtails) and Strepsiptera (twisted-winged parasites), are parasitic on humans. However, these groups are not capable of parasitizing humans. Strepsiptera are parasites of insects and spiders and there is no evidence that they parasitize anything else. Collembola lack the structures necessary to enter human skin, either to feed or to lay eggs. The authors of the single publication proposing to have found Collembola in human skin (2004. New York Entomological Society) manipulated photographs in Adobe Photoshop to supposedly show the presence of Collembola and their eggs. The quality of the photographs and the quality of objects in the photographs was so poor that it is quite possible to see almost any kind of animal in them. The journal should be embarrassed for having published this work.

Collembola Strepsiptera