Sunday, 24 June 2007

Fleas with Shoes

Back in the nineteenth century the King of England wanted to demonstrate the skills of English craftsmen. He had them build a life size model of a flea and sent it to the Czar of Russia. The Czar asked his craftsman to do better and the man returned to the Kremlin with a seemingly identical Flea. "But it's the same flea" exclaimed the Czar. "No, No," protested the craftsman, it has boots on.

Nikita Krushchev Russia's prime minister told this story when he visited England to explain the saying "The Russian craftsman puts on the shoes of the English flea."

Since then, at least two Russian artists have recreated the flea. Nikolai Siadristy from Ukraine showed his at the Warsaw Museum of Technology in 2002 and later in the Museum of the Microminiature in the Lavra Monastery. Anatoly Konenko also created a shod flea and it took him 7 years to do it. Anatoly exhibited his work in Ulyanovsk in 2003.

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

National Flea Week

National Flea Week starts next week and runs from 25th June to 1st July. This the second National Flea Week and is taking place at nearly 900 vet surgeries across the UK offering expert advice about checking and treating pets for fleas. Flea Week is timed to coincide with the increase in warm weather that fleas love. The current conditionals are ideal for fleas to hatch out and one pair of fleas can multiply to 1000s in just 21 days.

“During National Flea Week we hope to raise the awareness of the fact that if a pet has fleas, so does the home. Adult fleas on a pet are just the tip of the iceberg; in fact they are only 5% of the whole infestation.” commented Rebecca Stevenson, FRONTLINE® Veterinary Technical Manager.

National Flea Week is supported by Merial Animal Health, manufacturers of FRONTLINE Combo® and FRONTLINE® Spot On to help prompt pet owners to treat regularly for fleas and avoid any unnecessary suffering fleas may cause.

National Flea Week 25th June – 1st July 2007.

Sunday, 3 June 2007


Many thanks to Bonkers Fest this weekend who hosted many splendid exhibitions and bands and raised money for a range of good causes.

Of course I was there for the Insect Circus Museum who had dropped me an invite via MySpace. The museum had a fantastic range of models, playbills, posters, costumes and props from Insect Circuses. The museum charts different acts through time with it's range of colourful and educational exhibits and their proprietor was entertaining and knowledgeable.

One lady who seemed a little scared by the size of the exhibits, paused to recount a story of how her grandmother had seen ballerina fleas in the North East many years ago. It's good to bump into other insect fans and I am looking forward to seeing their live act later in the year.