They breed in dark places, caves, crevices, stone embankments, crumbling ruins, earth
fissures, and stony rubble.
b. Development. Although the larvae require damp breeding media, too much
moisture will kill them. The life cycle (Figure 5-10) usually takes several weeks to
complete, varying considerably with environmental conditions. Adult flies travel in short,
hopping flights from the breeding areas but rarely migrate farther than 50 meters.
c. Sandfly Attack on Humans. They attack man at the wrists, ankles, or any
exposed part of the body, and they will readily bite through thin socks.
Figure 5-10. Life cycle of the sandfly (Phlebotomus).
5-30. SANDFLY FEVER
a. General. Sandfly fever is an acute, self-limiting disease of viral etiology that
is transmitted through the bite of an infected phlebotomine fly. It occurs in tropical and
subtropical areas of Europe, Africa, South America, and Asia. Epidemics are seen in
non-native persons such as United States troops entering endemic areas.
(1) Reservoirs. Infected humans can infect flies 24 hours after becoming
infected themselves. The flies become infectious to man 7 days after taking an infected
blood meal and remain so for life. Man is therefore the reservoir, although the fly may
also be, as there is some evidence of transovarian passage of the virus.
Three or 4 days after the infecting bite, symptoms appear that
include fever, headache, malaise, and general pain in the limbs and back.
Symptoms are alarming, but recovery is a virtual certainty.