Temporal range: Middle Jurassic to Early Cretaceous, 165–125 Ma
Restoration of P. jurassicus
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: incertae sedis
Family: Pseudopulicidae
Genus: Pseudopulex
Tai-ping Gao, Chung-kun Shih, Xing Xu, Shuo Wan, Dong Ren, 2012
  • P. jurassicus
  • P. magnus

Pseudopulex is a genus of extinct, flea-like, parasitic insects that once fed on dinosaurs.[1]

The two species, Pseudopulex jurassicus and Pseudopulex magnus, are similar to modern fleas, but their bodies were more compressed, and they had longer claws which they used to hold on tightly to dinosaurs or pterosaurs. They were also 10 times as large as modern fleas and possessed serrated stylets, likely for feeding on blood through thick layers of skin.[2]


Fossils of Pseudopulex jurassicus are known from the middle Jurassic-aged Jiulongshan Formation, 165 million years old.[3] Fossils of Pseudopulex magnus are from the Early Cretaceous Yixian Formation, 125 million years old.


  1. "'Giant flea fed on dinosaur blood like mosquitoes' - NY Daily News". Retrieved 2012-05-02.
  2. Gao, Tai-ping; Shih, Chung-kun; Xu, Xing; Wang, Shuo; Ren, Dong (1 April 2012). "Mid-Mesozoic Flea-like Ectoparasites of Feathered or Haired Vertebrates". Current Biology. 22 (8): 732–735. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2012.03.012.
  3. "Ancient fleas plagued ancient dinosaurs". Retrieved 2012-05-02.
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