Mystery Critter Answer

Barb Parrish wrote: “Did you know that there is such a thing as “Snow Fleas”? Our snow was covered with these little critters—they are so small that you almost miss them. For some reason I asked Google if there is such a thing and it popped right up—they reminded me of sand fleas so I thought it was worth asking the question. The description says that they are like a herd of Bison, eating the algae from the snow.  In all my 71 years, I have never heard of such a thing. It is interesting to see the blown-up picture of them on Google—they have a forked tail and use it to flip from place to place. We had, and still have, millions of them on the snow. Thought you might want to put this in the next High Prairian and ask the community if they have noticed these on their snow. Straaaaange!” 

For more information on these weird but harmless critters (a species of Springtails), go to http://www.esa.org/esablog/research/snow-fleas-helpful-winter-critters-2/ or Google ‘Hypogastrura’.<

Swarming, they look like soot on the snow.

Swarming, they look like soot on the snow.

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