Fleas Found on Mars

Astonishing Mars find has scientists scratching their heads in this humorous "what if?"

Posted: Jan 18, 2013, 8 a.m. EST

Fleas from MarsDo you ever feel like fleas are everywhere? Maybe you can’t seem to get rid of those high-jumping pests. Here’s our humorous take on fleas infesting the last place you would think.

On January 7, 2013 at approximately 400 meters (1,300 feet) east south-east of its Gale Crater landing site, the Mars rover Curiosity picked up images of small black dots, appearing to be jumping in a controlled manner on and around the rover. Images have not yet been released to the public.

"After an intense investigation, we can say with unequivocal certainty that what we have found are micro-miniature life forms,” announced Curiosity Project Manager Pete Theisinger at a brief news conference on Wednesday. "These life forms are a recognizable species, identified as Ctenocephalides felis — more commonly known as fleas.”

This stunning discovery raises a plethora of questions. How did fleas ascend 40 million miles from Earth? Or rather, did they descend millions of years ago, living among us as pesky Martians? Just what are they feeding on? And if Mars is indeed covered with fleas, could we see the launch of a NASA flea control rover, or perhaps a giant fog bomb? We will have to wait for answers as Theisinger and his staff did not take questions.

In the meantime, scientists are left to reassess their original mission, as well as the daunting task of grappling with the same nuisances that ordinary pet owners have been dealing with for an eternity.

Please Note: This is intended for laughs only, no fleas have actually been found on Mars.

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