Glacier flea

This content was published on October 10, 2016 - 15:42

The glacier flea is a species of springtail, a hexapod, but not considered an insect. Tiny but tough, this creature can survive temperatures as low as -15°C (5°F). But it can’t take the heat – the glacier flea perishes if the mercury hits 12°C (54°F). It lives in holes in the ice, and can jump out if these start to fill with meltwater. 

Size: 1.5-2.5mm long

Food: cryoconite (glacier mud), pollen, plant remains and snow algae

Where to find: alpine glaciers and snowfields

(Video: SRF/swissinfo.ch) 

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